Draw Your Own Circuits with Circuit Scribe {Review + Giveaway}

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We can all agree that STEM, the education of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, is super important for our children learn this day and age. Technology is our future and where most of the new jobs are being created. With that being said, I love toys and activities that allow young children to learn how technology works and opens their world to new ideascircuit-scribe_copy-of-i-8njccmm-xl_lr and thought processes. I was recently given the opportunity to review an amazing product called Circuit Scribe from Electroninks, Inc. and was completely blown away by how much I learned (at 28 years old) and I am now hooked!

Created by a company based in Austin, TX and Cambridge, MA, Circuit Scribe is a revolutionary pen that uses non-toxic conductive ink that makes it easy for newbies (like myself) and expert makers to have fun with electronics in a new and easy way. Geared towards children 8 years and older, Circuit Scribe is an easy way to introduce STEM to kids and is also great for those who are already experienced. I have to admit, when I was asked to review this product, I knew nothing about it. But I did know that STEM is huge right now, and being integrated in schools across the country and all over the world. I knew I personally wanted to circuit-scribe_img_0048_lrget my hands on a kit (my electronic-loving husband also wanted to give it a whirl) and I definitely wanted to share it with our readers!

First of all, if you’ve never done anything with circuits (or if you have no idea what a circuit is), the workbook/sketchbook is so easy to read through and understand. I couldn’t wait for my husband to help explain everything to me, so I took it upon myself to learn how it all worked and it was surprisingly easy, even for a newbie like me. Here’s the gist of how it works: simply draw traces with their quick dry conductive ink pen, then snap on their magnetic modules to create fully functional electrical circuits instantly! You place the magnetic steel sheet under a sheet of paper, then use the circuit stencil with the conductive ink pen to draw pathways for the current to allow the modules to interact, creating the circuit. Each module is different and does something different. Here is a list of modules included in the Maker Kit that I received:circuit-scribe_ultimate-kit-contents_lr

  • 9V Power Supply and battery (power)
  • SPST Switch (input)
  • Photo Sensor (input)
  • Potentiometer (input)
  • Blinker (connect)
  • 2-Pin adaptor (connect)
  • NPN Transistor (connect)
  • BI-LED x2 (output)
  • RGB LED (output)
  • Buzzer (output)

The Maker Kit consists of 17 pieces, including 11 modules, 1 conductive ink pen, a circuit stencil, jumper stickers, a magnetic steel sheet (that has an awesome symbol guide for quick reference), and an easy to read step by step workbook. There are several different Circuit Scribe kits available, starting at $9.99 for the Mini Kit (available or pre-order), the Basic Kit for $44.99-$59.99, the Maker Kit for $79.99, the Ultimate Kit for $99.99, and the Developer Kit for $194.99. There are also classroom kits available so entire classes can participate and learn about circuits thanks to Circuit Scribe! You can also circuit-scribe_maker-kit-with-contents_lrorder replacement or extra modules right on their website, too. Check out all of Circuit Scribe’s products here! We also have an exclusive code for 15% off your Circuit Scribe purchase, jut use code BURRITO15 at check out!

This is the coolest, most educational product I have had the privilege of reviewing for BurritoBuzz. I have learned so much from playing around with the different modules already, and my husband is a big fan also. Although we’re still learning, we are having a blast going through the workbook together. If you have children or nieces or nephews that are interested in science and technology, I highly recommend Circuit Scribe! It’s a great way for kids (and adults) to learn and have fun at the same time. It would make a fantastic gift this holiday season, I know I will be gifting a kit or two myself this December! Here’s a video of my handsome husband showing how some of the modules work:

And guess what? We’re giving one lucky winner a Maker Kit of their own! Follow these quick and easy steps for a chance to win!

  1. Follow both @burritobuzz and @circuitscribe on Instagram, we will be checking!
  2. Like our original giveaway post.
  3. Tag a friend who would love the chance to win, too!
  4. That’s it!

The giveaway will start at 12pm EST on Thursday November 3, 2016 and end at 12pm EST on Sunday November 6 ,2016. You can tag as many friends as you’d like to get one entry per tag/comment. Good luck! **This giveaway is in no way sponsored by Instagram.**circuit-scribe_electroninks_wallpaper-logo-3_lr

Don’t forget to following Circuit Scribe on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to stay updated on sales, new products, and more!

– Casey

**Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

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Everyone Toilet Needs a Night Light

We all know not to turn the light on when going to the bathroom in the middle of the night. The bright lights burn your eyes with the power of a thousand suns. Okay, maybe that’s an exaggeration, but it really does suck to turn the light on when you’re half asleep, taking yourself or your toddler to the bathroom during the night. We have a dimly lit night light in our bathroom, but it doesn’t really do much to help us see any better. I recently had the opportunity to review a toilet night light from Yinuo and I can honestly say that every parent of a young child needs one!

It lights up the bowl with a rainbow of colors so bright, it makes a world of difference when going to the bathroom at night. You, or your child, can choose one of eight colors or it can be set to a rotation of all of the colors. It’s so easy to use, it just needs 3 AAA batteries (not included) and it easily attaches to the side of the toilet. The rod is adjustable to fit securely on any toilet. toiletIt’s motion activated and turns on for 120 seconds (a minute and a half). It’s very sensitive, just walking by the bathroom turns it on so you know it’ll always turn on when entering the bathroom. It’s also splash and waterproof, which I am so thankful for as I dropped it not once, but twice, in the toilet when cleaning.

I really wish I would have gotten one sooner, especially when we were potty training. It really helps at night and it keeps us safe being able to see what we’re doing. It’s even helped me. For some reason, I have an irrational fear of a snake being in the toilet bowl. It’s nice to be able to look down and see that there’s no snake without turning on the light and blinding myself. It’s on sale on Amazon right now for only $15.99 with Prime, so you’d save $14! Buy yours here! I promise it’ll help and your littles will love their new colorful potty!

– Casey

**BurritoBuzz received these products at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

The Original Squeeze Company {Review + Giveaway}

As parents, we all love the convenience of squeeze pouches. Whoever thought to put food in pouches for kids is a genius in my book and deserves an award of some sort. Whether they’re pureed baby food pouches for babies, or applesauce pouches for toddlers and big kids, being able to take the cap off and hand it to your child with no spoons involved is awesome. My big problem is they’re not cheap (as you all know I’m a cheapskate). Puree pouches cost more than a jar of baby food and you can often get a big jar of applesauce for the same price you’d pay for 4 pack of pouches. And if you want organic pouches, you’ll be paying a lot more. So why not make your own puree baby food or buy a big container of recipe151yogurt or applesauce and put it in a reusable pouch? I recently discovered a company that has allowed me to do just that! The Original Squeeze Company created the original reusable pouch and they were sweet enough to send me several of their products to review!

The Original Squeeze Company is a family owned company located in Idaho, started by mom Kristin Ahmer. Kristin created The Original Squeeze (for babies 6+ months), the original spill-proof reusable squeeze pouch that is made of durable silicone and is 100% toxin-free. They will last for years growing with your child, while also saving you money instead of purchasing one-use pouches! They make pouches for everyone, Original Squeeze with Eeeze for kids 2+ and the Sport Squeeze for all ages!

All Squeezes are:

  • Dishwasher safe (top rack only)
  • BPA, PVC, and Phthalate freepouch5
  • Easy-to-assemble components
  • Naturally non-stick for easy cleaning
  • Freezer safe
  • Come in several sizes and colors
  • Not for liquids

I received all three squeezes for my family to try. The Original Squeeze was perfect for my almost 7 month old. It’s available in 2 ($13.99) or 4 ($14.99) ounce pouch and several colors. The spill-proof nipple-like spout makes eating a lot less messy. My little one loves yogurt but is quite messy, as she likes to grab the spoon and try to feed herself, but with the Original Squeeze, it’s a lot easier and more convenient to have her suck out the yogurt. I’ve also made my own purees and spooning them in the pouch is super easy because the neck is pretty wide. My four year old loves her Original Squeeze with Eeeze. The spout is free-flowing, making it easy for her to get her yogurt, smoothie, or applesauce out. It’s available in 2 ($13.99), 4 ($14.99), and 6 ($15.99) ounce pouches and is perfect for school lunches! Its lid (that is attached to the pouch so you won’t lose it) allows it to be closed and not have to worry about it spilling out. I was sent the Sport Squeeze ($18.99) which is so awesome! It an 8 ounce pouch and is great for smoothies. If you work out, this pouch is a must for protein shakes! It’s flip-top lid is interchangeable with any Original Squeeze, too. The included carabiner attaches to anything, so you can just clip and go.

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If you have little ones who use pouches a lot or you just like the convenience of them without the high price, Original Squeeze products are for you! The quality is phenomefullnal and they will hold up through wash after wash. Since we received our pouches, all three of us have used them at least once a day. I love that you can also build your own Squeeze by choosing between 3 spouts (spill-proof, free-low, or flip spout) and ten trending colors. Little ones will love to pick their favorite colors! They’re super easy to wash and store, asor empty. The prices are a little high, but if you buy store-bought pouches often, it will soon pay for itself. Not to mention all the waste you’ll be saving our precious Mother Earth!

We love The Original Squeeze Company pouches so much, we’re giving away one of each to a lucky BurritoBuzz reader! One winner will receive: (1) The Original Squeeze, (1) The Original Squeeze with Eeeze, and (1) Sport Squeeze! It’s super easy to enter:

  1. Follow both @BurritoBuzz and @TheOriginalSqueezeCompany on Instagram
  2. Like the giveaway post
  3. Tag a friend (one per comment)
  4. That’s it!

The giveaway will start at 12pm on October 9th, 2016 and will end at 12pm on October 11th, 2016. The winner will be announced shortly after on the original giveaway post. Best of luck! **This giveaway is in no way sponsored by Instagram.**

Best sure to follow The Original Squeeze Company on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest, too, for sales and new products! Check out their recipes for applesauce ble4pack300nds, yogurt blends, purees, and more here!

– Casey

**Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

Essential Oils for Allergies {Lavender, Peppermint & Lemon by Young Living}

younglivingallergiesburritobuzzIf you follow my posts, then you know that I am a pretty crunchy mom. When it comes to my life, and my children’s especially, I try to use the best products available. There are so many chemicals surrounding us on a daily basis, so I try to limit chemicals and artificial ingredients that we put into our bodies specifically.

I found essential oils when BK#1 was little. You can read about Tummy Gize and how I use it here. I also use oils for teething, you can read about that here. Last year, I found a blend that works wonders for our family’s allergies. I have some pretty rough seasonal allergies, my husband has seasonal allergies and some specific allergies, and our littles definitely inherited them unfortunately. Thankfully, right now,  it just seems like the babies have seasonal allergies. Their pediatrician prescribed some over the counter allergy medication. They didn’t really help, so she then prescribed prescription strength medicine. After  some time, I didn’t see much of a change in symptoms even though my one year old was taking medication every single day. I consulted with our pediatrician and we decided to start exploring some natural remedies for their allergies before extensive allergy testing and medications.lrj2b.jpg

I started diffusing a blend of peppermint, lavender, and lemon and saw immediate results. Not only were the results immediate, but they were continuous. They are still working. Any time the kids are having any allergy symptoms, I diffuse the blend and their sniffles subside within minutes. As an adult, I not only notice my runny nose and sniffles disappear, but my sinuses are clear! If you have allergies, you know how amazing this feels.

***Before I go into how it works, I need to preface with the fact that I am not a Young Living rep, nor am I being paid to endorse Young Living*** 

I have done the research and tested multiple other brands. Young Living is the best quality and works the best. You can find many different brands at many different price points for your budget. But like most things, you get what you pay for. It is just that simple.

HOW TO USE

Apply:

  • Always dilute with a carrier oil (like coconut) for little ones.
  • Apply to base of neck.
  • Apply to bottom of feet and put on socks.
  • I apply Lavender alone on my cheekbones and bridge of my nose for sinus pressure relief.
  • You can also make a roller ball using equal parts of each oil for travel and to have the oil already mixed on hand.

YOUNGLIVINGBURRITOBUZZALLERGYSEASONDIFFUSER.jpgDiffuse:

  •  I diffuse for the kids 95% of the time.
  • I use this diffuser instead of an expensive one from Young Living and it works great and has never broken. (I have a Young Living diffuser that has died)
  • Fill diffuser to fill line with water then add 5 drops Lavender, 4 drops Lemon, and 3 drops Peppermint. I put the diffuser in whatever room we are in and it runs for around 6 hours before I need to refill.
  • Depending on the severity of their symptoms, I diffuse 24/7 or just in the morning when they wake with sniffles.

Ingest:

  • Add 1 drop of each oil to 1 teaspoon of local honey for children. For adults, use 2-3 drops of each oil.
  • It is an oil, so it will be a little rough on the pallet. Just use a chaser like a glass of water.

Peppermint and Children

Always be safe with your oils. Especially with peppermint. Peppermint is one of the most effective essential oils for respiratory infections and congestion, but it can be dangerous for young children. It can slow breathing, so be sure to always use a safe diluted amount. There are many different opinions and ages that are suggested. Some say don’t use under age 3, some say it’s safe as long as it’s diluted. Our pediatrician said that she felt it was safe if heavily diluted or diffused. I don’t apply blends with peppermint to my little ones, but there is plenty of research saying that if applied safely, it is okay to use. I just worry so much as it is, so I completely avoid applying it since diffusing the blend works so perfectly already. Please read more about oil safety here.

Fall is my favorite season, but our bodies don’t like the weather changes as much as I do. I am so glad to have found a natural solution! I hope this blend helps you as much as it helps my family.

– Amanda

 

 

Nuun: Hydrating Electrolyte Tablets {Review}

Before I was a wife and mom, I was an athlete. I like to think that I am still an athlete some days, so when I discovered this product, my inner athlete was drawn to it. The convenience of a simple tablet put into water with tNunhe purpose of hydrating, replenishing electrolytes, and providing an energy boost was super appealing. I quickly contacted Nuun and lucky for us, they were eager to share their product with the BurritoBuzz Moms.

Nuun is based out of Seattle and over the course their 12 year history, have become “the #1 selling sports drink tab in the cycling, running, and outdoor specialty marketplaces.” I know what you’re thinking, we aren’t athletes. We’re moms. It doesn’t matter. Our sport is life. There are so many days where we feel like we have basically competed in the Olympics, just in the comfort of our own homes, surrounded by our rowdy kids. It is so important for moms to stay healthy and hydrated for our families and ourselves!

“Clean Product, Clean Planet, and Clean Sport” are the principles Nuun strives to abide by, which I think speaks volumes in a world filled with artificial products harming people and our planet. Nuun tablets feature plant-based ingredients, are gluten free, vegan, soy/dairy free, low calorie, contain no preservatives, and are packed with valuable electrolytes. Sounds legit, right? They’re not packed with sugar and artificial sweeteners like so many other products.

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Nuun offers different varieties based on your needs. We sampled Nuun Active and Nuun Energy. The products were similar, but the Energy variety does have green tea extract for an added caffeine boost. A friend of mine, who is a competitive runner, sampled the Nuun Active and said “it was perfect for both before and after my long runs” and “it actually tasted really good!” They also untitledhave a Plus for Nuun (can be added during endurance activities) and Nuun All Day Hydration. Nuun All Day Hydration is perfect for busy, on-the-go individuals, like moms, who want to make sure they are getting all the right minerals and vitamins along with the appropriate hydration to stay healthy for their families. I will definitely be ordering my own here.

You’re probably wondering what the Nuun tablets taste like. If you’re thinking this product sounds great so there’s no way it can taste good, you’d be wrong. I was very surprised by how much I enjoyed the different flavors. The flavors were very refreshing and not overpowering. Some of their options include orange, tri-berry, citrus fruit, and lemon lime. When you purchase a Nuun tube, you get 10 tablets. Each tablet then goes on to dissolve in 16 oz of water. My only complaint would be that the tablets do take a few minutes to completely dissolve, so be patient! But it’s well worth the wait!

You can purchase Nuun and read all about their mission and products by visiting their website here. They also have an awesome comparison of all of their different products on this page. Nuun is also available on Amazon – Nuun Active, Nuun Energy, and Plus for Nuun.

Don’t forget to follow Nuun on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook for updates on products and sales

– Megan

**BurritoBuzz received these products at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

Freida’s Pantry is now available in the US!

Like most new moms, I hardly had the time and energy to eat when my first daughter was born. I quite literally lived on a couple cans of Redbull a day. I got back to my pre-baby weight super fast, and even lost about 15 pounds more on top of that. I hadn’t been so small since my freshman year of high school and it happened in a really unhealthy way. When you have a newborn, finding the time and energy to eat just doesn’t happen. Instead of eating when you get free time, you choose to do the dishes, laundry, or if you’re smart, you’ll take a nap. I can’t image if I had been breastfeeding. You burn so many calories when you nurse, so you have to eat. That’s where Freida’s Pantry comes in! I recently found out this UK company is launching in the US today and I had to share their delicious nutritional bars with our readers!

Freida’s Pantry bars contain a mix of grains, nuts, and super seeds that are rich in vitamin B that help with energy production. The bars provide protein which keeps you feeling fuller, longer, and is a quick and convenient snack that’s also good for you. For breastfeeding mamas, they’re also rich in Omega 3 and “good fats” that have been shown to increase the fat content in breastmilk. The unique blend of seeds and nuts provide a variety of vitamins and minerals like iron, calcium, zinc, and selenium. The bars are wheat, soy, and dairy-free and are suitable for vegans.

  • No artificial additives or preservatives
  • Non GMO
  • All ingredients are ethically sourced

Three bars are coming to the US today, and they’re all so good!

Freida’s Pantry Feeding Food Snack Bar is perfect for postpartum and breastfeeding moms. It’s packed with superfoods and full of nutrients and good fats that help with energy levels (that we all know new moms need help with) and they keep you full longer. I love how convenient a snack bar is and the fact that it helps nursing moms fight hunger and tiredness and supports lactation makes it even more awesome! Ingredients: Oats, Almonds, Pistachios, lin seeds, Quinoa, Sunflower seeds, Chia seeds, fennel seed, raisins, golden syrup and sunflower oilfriedaspantry2Freida’s Pantry Super Charged Food Snack Bar – Goji & Fennel is so delicious! It’s super dense in several super foods that keeps energy up and provides much needed nutrients. It’s made up of 9 different super seeds, nuts, grains, and fruits. It’s the perfect start to your morning, whether you’re an expectant mom, a tired parent, working on your fitness, or just a busy, active person. Ingredients: Oats, Linseeds, Sunflower Seeds, Chia Seeds, Fennel Seeds, Almonds, Quinoa, Pistachios, Goji Berries, RaisinsbarrrrFreida’s Pantry Super Charged Food Snack Bar – Maca & Chia is equally delicious, but I didn’t try it. My husband got to it first and devoured it! He loved it! It’s made of a unique mix of superfoods that support fertility as well as energy levels and vitality. Again, it’s perfect the perfect snack for new moms and those in the pre-pregnancy stage. Ingredients: Oats, Quinoa, Almonds, Linseeds, Brazil nuts, Pumpkin seeds, Sunflower seeds, Sesame Seeds, Maca, Goji berries, Golden Syrup, Sunflower OilbarFreida’s Pantry bars are available in packs of 12 for $31.20, making each bar $2.60 which is comparable to other seed and nut bars on the market, but Freida’s Pantry bars pack such a big punch! The fact that they’re made for pregnant, nursing, and postpartum women makes them an even better deal at that price! Check out Freida’s Pantry website for more nutritional information, FAQs, and you can also order yourself a pack of bars and have them delivered right to your door!

Be sure to follow on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter to stay up-to-date with all things Freida’s Pantry!

– Casey

**Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

Nootrobox GoCubes Chewable Coffee {Review}

I’m not a home-brewed coffee drinker, I never have been and seeing as how I am 26, I probably never will be. I will, however, indulge in any type of cold coffee. I love the taste of coffee and I love the smell of it, so I’m not sure what the issue is with drinking it hot. So when I was offered to review Nootrobox’s GoCubes Chewable Coffee, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity.

GoCubes are chewable coffee cubes that offer the caffeine off a cup of coffee without the jitters. Nootrobox has added L-theanine, B6, and methylated B12 for an extra boost and to help alleviate those all well known coffee jitters.hero-shot-yellow

More about the cubes: they come in a pack of 4 and there is a flavor assortment in each pack: Mocha, Pure Drip, and Latte.

The fact that they are concentrated caffeine, as well as a few other ingredients, makes the reaction completely different than drinking coffee. They worked rather quickly and lasted for quite some time. I didn’t experience the jitters or stomach issues I experience after drinking coffee.

Flavor wise, I don’t know where to start. You have to first explain to yourself these are not chocolates or candy, so do not expect them to be sweet or like anything that would be pleasurable to your pallet. The initial taste was okay, but the longer the cube was ibj289byrsdcj4ts00z4on my mouth, the weirder the taste became. It was a cross between black coffee and how a coffee filter smells after it’s wet (kind of sour). Each pack contains all three flavors, so if you don’t like one certain flavor, you’re pretty much out of luck as they all look and smell the same.

Convenience wise, they are fantastic! The small package is easily transported and can be easily carried and stored in your purse, gym bag, desk drawer, etc. Unfortuantely, the package is not resealable. So if you’re only needing 2 cubes, you have to wrap up and clip the plastic package to keep the other two cubes fresh.

Nutritionally, they’re not too terrible for you. A little bit high in sugar and carbs for people, like my husband, who choose low carbs options to accompany his gym regime. Given how a plain black cup of coffee is sugar and carb free, this could be a problem for some. What I don’t like is the first two ingredients being glucose (corn) syrup and sugar. I drink my coffee with sugar but real sugar, not highly processed syrups.

The price point is pretty high, but our BurritoBuzz readers can get 10% off your order by clicking here! They run about $39 for 20 4-packs. That is roughly 40 cups of coffee. Comparing it to the typical home brew, you can purchase a 33.9oz container of Folgers and brew roughly 270 cups of coffee for about $18. However, you will lose the convenience, (almost) immediate energy kick, and other brain focus ingredients.

I would have to give the GoCubes a 3 out of 5 stars. I think there is a little room for improvement and tweaking that could be done to packaging, price, and definitely taste, but overall, a very innovative product that tackles the quickness and convenience of needing caffeine that we all know too well and that exhausted parents need.

– Kirstyn

**Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

Big Red Rooster Projection Alarm Clock {Review}

I don’t know about you, but waking my daughter on schools days just plain sucks. It’s not fun. She’s crabby with me and only me, because I’m the one that woke her up. I feel it starts our entire day on the wrong foot. She’s four and learning her numbers and always asking what time is it, so I thought now would be the perfect time to get her own alarm clock for her room. I wouldn’t be the one waking her so she wouldn’t be snotty with me and it cabwodqprgn also help with her numbers and telling time. I got the opportunity to review an awesome interactive alarm clock from Big Red Rooster and I was eager to check it out.

There are four different interactive alarm clocks to choose from, a Rocket Ship Projection Alarm Clock, which was their first clock to hit the market, and three new animals, a Dog Projection Alarm Clock, a Cat Projection Alarm Clock, and a Dinosaur Projection Alarm Clock. What sets them apart is the time and images they project! Each clock has four different images that projects on your ceiling or wall and each image reaches up to 30 inches in diameter. The clocks stand about 8 inches tall and their heads rotate 340 degrees, so they’re interactive themselves. The timer can be set for 10 or 30 minutes so the images aren’t projected the entire night, or it can be set to project all night. You have the option tobig-red-rooster-brrc103ac-dinosaur-projection-alarm-clock-operates-on-an-ac-adaptor-included-or-3-c-batteries-0-hires project just the time, the images and the time or just the images, so there’s options for everyone. They operate on an AC adaptor, which is included, or can be cordless with 3 C batteries.

My daughter picked the green dinosaur alarm clock because she loves dinosaurs and it’s a pretty cool dinosaur. The four dinosaur images are a Diabloceratops, Stegosaurus, Diplodocus, and Pterodactyl and Ampelosaurus. And while my daughter thinks they’re super cool, the graphics aren’t that great, especially if you have a high ceiling. But she likes it, and that’s all that matters to me. The clock is super easy to set, as is the alarm. And there are on and off buttons on the front for the projection clock and images on the front. And the set and snooze buttons are right on the front make idinosaur_projection_clock_1024x1024t one-touch to set the alarm and to snooze if your little one is super stubborn in the mornings.

Overall, I’m thrilled with this alarm clock and I’m so glad I no longer have to wake my little sleeping bear in the mornings. She’s waking up really proud of herself for turning her alarm off and not having to be woken up. She’s happier, which of course makes me happy. The graphics could be better, but the clocks are really cute and it’s helping my little one learn how to tell time, too. Not much more I could ask for, except perhaps a lower price. The $29.99 price tag is a little high for my tight budget, so to see it at around $20 would make it a definite winner for me. The rocket ship, cat, and dog are super cute, so be sure to check out all of the alarm clocks here! Big Red Rooster also makes sound machines, so if you’re in the market for one, check out the children sound machines here and the adult sound machines here!

Don’t forget to follow Big Red Rooster on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest to stay in the loop with new releases and sales!

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Four cute alarm clocks to choose from!

– Casey

**Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

My Experience with Misoprostol (Cytotec)

When I went to my OB appointment following my recent miscarriage, my uterus was empty aside from some lining and some clotting but my doctor still prescribed me oral Misoprostol (Cytotec).

Although my body will expel everything all in due time, I believe the main concern comes from not expelling the remnants quick enough and becoming septic, causing an infection. After long thought, research, and discussion with my husband and even though the human body is a well oiled machine and knows what needs to be done, the fear of infection which could potentially lead to sterility consumed our thoughts and ultimately led me to  the decide to take this medication. It was obviously prescribed for a reason.

I immediately turned to Google to find the answers to all of my questions, most are still unanswered. My non-expert conclusion: This medication reacts differently with everyone. It’s worrisome especially because this medication is prescribed (or at least with me it was) with a narcotic pain medication and a strong anti-inflammatory. My mind automatically goes “holy shit, this is going to suck.” Yesterday, on my way home from the doctor, I experienced some pretty heavy cramps and passed large(r) clots when I got home. The cramping has stopped, but I thought I was going to throw up from that pain, so I was really dreading this.

Emotionally, it’s really hard to take a pill that is prescribed for abortions, to induce labor, and to essentially finish or start a miscarriage. I know I am no longer pregnant, I passed the placenta, baby, and other “products of conception.” But this is it. This finishes and finalizes the physical aspect of losing our baby.

The medication states it can take up to 4-6 hours to go into effect and the strong effects should subside within 12 hours. It is prescribed as “2 now and 1 every 6 hours thereafter until complete.” So I will be taking this medication from 11:45 am today until 11:45 pm tomorrow, every 6 hours for one entire day.

A few bits of advice given to me by my doctor:

1. Do not be alone while taking this medication. This was recommended by my doctor as the amount of bleeding can cause dizziness and the potential pain can be debilitating.

2. Take the medication early so given the medications “typical timeline,” the majority of symptoms will be completed prior to bed.

3. Stay on top of the pain with pain medicine. Do not wait until your cramps are painful to take a pill. It’s way easier to stay ahead of the pain than it is to get rid of it once it sets in.

4. Invest in some nice, thick long pads. I have been using Poise Overnight Long Length Pads since my miscarriage. These are the best. I have tried Always Nighttime Pads and have experience numerous leaks over the sides. The Poise pads are long, thick, and super absorbent. I have not had one single instance of leaking. They have leak lock sides to prevent leaking during the day and at night. They’re not cheap, but they’re worth every cent. I believe they’re around $25 for 60 of them at WalMart. Here is my experience:

September 13th:

11:45am – Took my first two prescribed Cytotec pills, 1-800mg Ibuprofen and 1 Percocet
12:45pm – No pain
1:45pm – Eensey weensey back cramp comparable to PMS symptoms before starting a period
2:45pm – Back cramp subsided, still nothing
3:34pm – Stomach cramps that resembled hunger pains. Uterine wise, nothing.
4:45pm -Stomach cramps remain, nothing.
5:45pm – Took my second dose of Cytotec and 1 Percocet (just in case). This has been pretty uneventful thus far.
8:24pm – Still nothing. I’m so confused.
11:17pm – Still nothing. I’m remembering the cramping and passage of clots and tissues yesterday and very early today and wondering if my uterus is already cleared out therefore the medicine has nothing to do.

September 14th:

9:30am – I’ve taken my 4th dose of Cytotec and still nothing.

12:34pm – Slight cramping resembling a period. Nothing crazy.

3:45pm – No cramping. Passed a few small clot, but not even really bleeding.

Took two more doses this day. All in all, it was pretty uneventful. No real pain, no crazy bleeding, and well, not at all what I expected. I’m sure everyone’s experiences will be different. So really, I’m sort of confused by the whole process. I was expecting labor pains, crime scene bleeding, and debilitating symptoms but luckily, I snuck by with some hunger pains and a cramp or two. I will be following up with my OB just to ensure my uterus is clearer.

If you have your own experience with this medication, please comment and let me and others know how it went for you.

– Kirstyn

I Am The 1-In-4

“I’ll see you in my dreams tonight.
I’ll kiss your cheek and hold you tight.
I have no more tears left to cry.
You’ve flown away, my butterfly.”

This is not going to be a typical BurritoBuzz blog post. Typically we’re reviewing products, being sarcastic, writing about Lego’s and organization. We’re making our readers laugh and living the happy mommy dream one post at a time. However, I am sharing with you today about a topic that isn’t talked about, taboo in a sense; people aren’t made aware of it because no one talks about it and it’s heartbreaking: pregnancy loss. This is going to be real and this is going to be tear-jerking, but not only do I want others to be able to try to understand, I want other moms who have experienced loss to know that the moms here at BurritoBuzz sympathize with you, can relate and are here for you. 

**Please keep in mind that this is my experience. If you have cramping, bleeding, back pain or another out-of-the-norm symptom, please call your doctor or visit your nearest ER as soon as possible. **

I couldn’t even think of a witty typical BurritoBuzz title for this post and I’m sure that has to do with the fact I simply can’t think at all right now. It’s like a blurred shade has been pulled over my eyes and I just go through the motions to make it through the day.

Nothing I can put into words will truthfully help anyone understand. It’s one of those situations, that if you haven’t been there, you can’t even begin to imagine the pain. It’s one of the worst things I have experienced in my entire life, and I’m still trying to figure out how to make it from day to day. I promise I’m not being overly dramatic, it absolutely f*cking sucks. a27c0fe7949608c3784b2b824e541dd3

The wounds are fresh and very, very new. Not even a week ago, I was being rushed to the ER via ambulance with my 10 week old fetus in a tiny little container on my lap. I had suffered a spontaneous complete miscarriage at home at 9:42pm on Thursday, September 8th, 2016.

Let me start from the beginning. Here’s how it all happened:

Sunday, September 4th – I was seen in the ER for minor spotting with no accompanied cramps. An ultrasound was done and we were told our baby was fine, growing right on schedule, strong heartbeat and the spotting was from a subchorionic hematoma and there was nothing to worry about. Given the positive news, Danny (my husband) left for a funeral in California.

Tuesday, September 6th – I was back in the ER, as the blood had increased, still no cramping. Given the same information as before in regards to the baby being healthy and everything looking perfect.

Wednesday, September 7th – I was seen by an OB. I had yet another ultrasound where she told me everything was perfect, the baby looked great. I still had the subchorionic hematoma, but there was no harm to me or the baby. She told me I had a less than 2% chance of pregnancy loss. I was told to expect some minor (if any) cramping while the bleed cleared itself out. She then reiterated the “low, low risk of loss.” I remember hugging her as I left and thanking her because she put my mind at ease. I immediately called Danny and told him the great news.

Thursday, September 8th – Typical day at home. No bleeding. Few twingy cramps here and there, but nothing worrisome, all to “be expected.” I laid down in bed with C (he sleeps in my bed when Danny is out of town). I felt a peculiar “pop” right above my pelvic bone and vaguely remembering Googling “can you feel you baby move at 10 weeks?” While reading about how chances are extremely slim, I felt more wetness than normal. I figured I was spotting again. I had light panty liner on, so no worries. However, felt the urge to go pee. I stood up out of bed and from there to the hospital is a huge blur. I remember barely making it to my tile floor before the amount of blood became alarming, as it pooled around my feet. I remember trying to stay calm since my 3 year old son was still awake. I remember sitting on the floor of the bathroom on the phone with Danny telling him I had a miscarriage and was holding our 10 week old fetus in my hands. He didn’t want to believe me, swore I was mistaken because less than 36 hours prior I was told everything was perfect. I called my mother-in-law to come stay with C and I sat on the bathroom floor, in a huge puddle of blood, clots and tissue, with our baby, crying hysterically. I remember intermittently answering and making phone calls to my husband and listened to his beg and plea for me to be okay and get to the hospital. I remember trying to clean up the floor before my mother-in-law got there. I suppose this was out of embarrassment and instinct. I don’t remember her coming over and I don’t remember calling 911, but now know the reason I did was the amount of blood I lost. I don’t remember how my baby got placed into a tiny Tupperware container. I don’t remember the ambulance ride or getting to the hospital. I was in such a daze. A blank stare daze. I didn’t speak. I didn’t think. I didn’t move. I laid in the hospital bed, still hemorrhaging severely while the doctors did whatever they needed to. There were so many people, so many questions, gowns, blankets and IVs. My heart rate was through the roof and my blood pressure was low.  I had lost a significant amount of blood, to the point they were hanging bags of blood to give me (which I guess I refused until 100% medically necessary). They estimated from 9:42pm to the time I had gotten to the hospital, I lost between 550-575 ml of blood. I don’t remember anything else past that point. I was discharged roughly 8 hours later with instructions, narcotics and an empty womb.

September 9th-12th – Bleeding, mild cramping, exhaustion and still emotionally numb.

Monday, September 12th – I followed up with OB today and it was horrible. I walked down the hallway of the Women’s Health Clinic as the sound of fetal heart monitors echoed out of the rooms and into the hallway. The doctor came in, did an ultrasound and said that aside from some average clots and a thick uterine lining, my body had expelled everything itself, as if I was somehow unaware of this. She prescribed Cytotec to re-induce labor, Percocet and Ibuprofen for pain. The Cytotec will “shorten the rest of the process to 1-2 days”. I can’t write about my experience with the Cytotec because I haven’t began taking it yet and haven’t decided if I will. If I chose to take it, I will write about it. My body is naturally doing what it is supposed to do and the doctor said everything will resolve itself. I did not need and as of right now, will not need a D&C. This appointment was extremely hard. Not only did I see the same doctor who told me the day before I miscarried that everything was “perfect,” but I also saw my barren uterus. The same uterus that was so full of life, kicking feet and a beating heart last week. It really took a bigger toll on my already fragile emotional state.

Emotionally, I’m still not sure what is going through my head. The “Stages of Grief Cycle” is  a universal kinda thing but what is all true is that we all grieve differently and this cycle is a bunch of bullshit. Just because I’m choosing to share my story doesn’t mean I am in the “Dialogue and Bargaining” stage and given how I’m feeling, I am image011_0somewhere between my personally improvised grief cycle categories of “not wanting to get out of bed in the morning” and “sitting on the couch in a daze all day.” What has truthfully helped me a teeny tiny bit, is the outreaching of my family and friends who have been there and experienced a loss. The support of my husband is outstanding and people have come out of the woodwork to offer their condolences and share their stories. They’ve offered “tips and tricks” for what has helped them, links to websites, books, songs, blogs, etc. Does it heal the pain? Absolutely not. Does it help by surrounding yourself with others who can truthfully relate? Absolutely. Surround yourself with anyone and everyone you feel comfortable with and bask in the love and support you’ll receive. There have been moments when I want to be 100% alone and just be able to cry and scream without anyone consoling me. There have been moments when I want someone around because I won’t breakdown around others and it’s nice to be able to feel “normal” in the sense of having a casual conversation. It’s a crazy mixture of wanting people around, but wanting to be alone. I’ve found myself locked in my bedroom with a house full of people just to keep myself from having a panic attack. There are other days when I have been at my mother-in-law’s house, laughing and interacting with other members of the family. I do want to take an extra moment and touch on my wonderful husband. Even from over 2000 miles away he has been my rock through all of this. He answers the phone no matter what time of day, he calls numerous times a day to make sure I’m okay and he knows how to make me laugh even through all of this. He even sent me a dozen red roses to ensure I knew he was here for me. I have never doubted his support and do not fault him for being away. If we received even a slight bit of hesitant news on that Sunday, he wouldn’t have left. I strongly encourage you to take comfort in your spouse or significant other. They may not show it as emotionally as you will but trust me, they’re hurting just as bad.
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I can’t tell you how to grieve and I can’t give you a timeline as to when the pain will subside because frankly, I don’t think it ever will completely. What I can provide is a support system and the ability for you to reach out to someone who has been there, understands what you’re going through and can offer a sympathetic shoulder to cry on.

I’m here for you, mama. We’re here for you. You’re not just a 1-in-4 statistic like the world labels you as. You’re a grieving mom to an Angel Baby. 

– Kirstyn

 

27 Steps to Being an Awesome Stay-at- Home-Mom

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  1. Wake up before your kids.
  2. Schedule your meals and cook ahead to save time.
  3. Always plan time for your own physical activity.
  4. Have a set routine.
  5. Be sure to have naptime and meals at the same time every day.
  6. Schedule your cleaning and only tackle one chore a day.
  7. Don’t forget to have play dates.
  8. This list is a bunch of crap… Sorry about the click bait.

If you’re a stay at home parent, you’re laughing hysterically at this list because 99% of the time all of those are virtually impossible.

I am so sick of seeing Mommy Blog posts about “How to be a Stay at Home Mom”

10 Things To Ensure You Are A Great Stay At Home Mom

6 Ways To Be A Productive Stay At Home Mom

How To Afford Being a Stay At Home Mom

Habits of an Effective Stay At Home Mom

It’s all a bunch of malarkey. You want to know why? Because it looks different for every single mom. Heck, sometimes it looks completely different and it’s a stay at home dad.**gasp** I’m guilty though, because yes, I do click on and read almost all of them. Hoping and praying that somehow this little circus that I got myself into can be more manageable. 210037d0f899f9dc49d3d5edf759ee48.jpgHonestly, I wish I had an answer for all of your stay at home mom questions, but I don’t. I have tips and tricks that have worked for me and my family, but I guarantee that they won’t work for everyone.

What will help is some brutal honesty.

You will never sleep. Like ever. It just doesn’t happen. We get the kids to bed, I try to get some chores done, spend time with my husband, get ready for bed and by the time I am in bed it is 11pm. In two or three hours, my 2 year old will be up wandering the halls asking for her soccer ball or something ridiculous. After getting her back to bed, I lay back down and generally get another 2 hours of sleep because one or both of my little ones are up at 5 AM every day. Every single day. Today it was 4:45…2e2b5526ce131e18a20537f492be2c1a

3 or 4 hours of sleep at night on repeat. My husband works nights,  so sleep is just out of the questions for like, ever. Getting up early for “me time” and to get ready for the day is hilarious.

I have some OCD tendencies but I despise housework. It’s not that I don’t do it. My house is almost always spotless. Especially if we are planning on having company over. I do it, but that doesn’t mean I like it. Your chores never go away. It is a constant stream of dishes, laundry, vacuuming, picking up, dusting, washing the floors, cleaning up outside, cleaning up after pets, picking up toys. Your house never gets a break. No one is at work and daycare all day. It is constantly getting filthy. It might not stay that way for long, but you never stop moving. Between chasing kids and picking up toys, you don’t sit down a whole lot. I never understand when people say they love doing dishes or laundry. I never used to hate it, but I do now. It’s a constant chore that never ends. Someone always has something dirty in their room or on them, and there is always a sippy cup or snack cup hidden away that needs washed.87322a94dfae2c55e7abf4b3e472b313

I told my husband the other day that I am an awesome stay at home mom but I suck at being a housewifeThere are many days when I am asked what’s for dinner and the answer is “whatever you can find and you better use paper products.”

It’s hard. Our job is never done.

Your coworkers like to touch you a lot, they are mean sometimes and they don’t do a whole lot of work.  Quietly sitting at the computer typing this post and que the 2 year old that just jumped on my back requesting a “pony ride.”  There is also a 1 year old over in the corner emptying a basket full of freshly folded clothes on top of the very hairy lab.

You’re never alone. There isn’t a lot of explanation for this. It’s simple. You are your children’s everything, so that means they have to be attached to you all day long. Good luck with your coffee break. I just warmed mine up for the 3rd time this morning.6.png

People will ask you if you want help all the time.  Believe it or not, I really can do this. I have two kids and taking them to the store with me is my job. Cleaning my house with kids at home is my job, among many other things.

I will let you spend time with my kids, and sometimes, yes you do need to get out, but I promise you can do chores and things without people helping you all the time. Help is nice. I have been getting better about letting people give me a hand, but just be warned. People have this attitude that because you didn’t wash your hair today that you must need help. It’s annoying and approaching disrespectful. If I was anyone else doing a hard job, would you offer to give me a break because I had a long day? This is a 24/7 job and I am well aware that I signed up for a crazy job.

When are you getting a real job? ……Please ask me that one more time, I dare you. People even say “I just could never stay home and not work, I would have to get a real job and provide for my child.” So when you are at your “real job”, do you hire a real person to watch your kids or a fake one? People are ignorant, say it to your face and want an actual answer, like what they said wasn’t the stupidest thing you’ve ever heard. I am warning you now, if you haven’t heard it already, you will.14088651_1756641454589235_5618134841622901219_n.jpg

Being a homebody isn’t a bad thing. I love being at home. Ever heard of yoga pants and leggings?  An endless supply of coffee and baby breath? Keep it coming. I literally have to pump myself up to go out with friends. Don’t get me wrong, I love my friends. I love spending time with other adults. I know it is important. I just like my kids, my coffee, my Netflix and my blog more than dinner and drinks.

“Affording” to be a stay at home mom isn’t easy. Affording is in quotes because I am still trying to figure that out. I am not a couponer. I shop sales and I shop at Aldi. We don’t do a lot of extra stuff, we are a middle class suburban family and I am happy that way. We don’t always get all the new shiny things we want, and there are times that I look back at a month when we had extra expenses and wonder how we did it. But you make it. I promise that there is always a way that things work out. All we knew was that we could pay all of our bills and a little more on one income, that we wanted the kids to have me 24/7, until they were at least in school and that we were going to make it work.83ec59e162040d21c114725fb105aa92

You will never regret the decision to stay home and it is so much fun! I have always wanted to be a stay at home mom. Luckily, my dream came true. Such a simple dream. There is never a bad day when I say “if I could just clock out and go to work.” You will never regret getting extra time with your kids. Getting to see every single milestone unfold before your eyes. Teaching them everything and watching them learn from you. It really is a gift. Don’t take it lightly and don’t brag to your working mom friends about it either.

Not everyone can do it. Being a stay at home mom is not for everyone and there is nothing wrong with that. Working parents are beyond awesome! I have a friend who is an amazing mother but would lose her mind if she was surrounded by her kids all day. Not everyone can do it and that’s completely normal. If you are a working parent, don’t feel bad about working. You spend time and teach your children in your own way, and provide them with awesome caregivers.

Time is fleeting and whatever time we get with our tiny humans is a blessing.

Now that this written  maybe I wrote it for myself, to make me feel better. I don’t know. I just hope that someone can relate and has days where they feel like this is the craziest job on the planet, too. ❤

– Amanda

How We Afforded IVF

Woof. For us, the financial aspect of infertility was probably the most stressful. We have easily spent $15,000 at this point and that is cheap compared to a lot of couple’s expenses. It’s hard to spend that kind of money only for a chance of becoming pregnant. There are no guarantees unless you go to a clinic that offers those programs and it’s still a gamble. They’re generally more expensive up front, so if you get lucky and get pregnant on your first shot, you’re out a lot of money!

We took a year off to save up the money for IVF because the money is due upfront and we also wanted to use that time to get in the best health that we could. Here are some of the ways we raised money:

  • GoFundMe. We had some awesome friends (Katie from BurritoBuzz and her husband) who asked us if they could set up a GoFundMe account for us. This was an amazing gift and it helped us raise a good chunk of money without having to do a lot of work. This was great too, since our goal was to also raise infertility awareness.
  • Garage Sale. We had a massive garage sale. It was huge. My mom and I cleaned out her basement and we also had a lot of people donate items for us to sell. I advertised it on a local buy/sell/trade page and that really helped. A lot of people who stopped at the sale also wished us well with IVF and that was very sweet.image
  • Cookie Fundraiser. This one might not be as feasible for everyone, but I went to culinary school for pastry arts. I worked at a bakery and they offered to let me make and sell an item at the bakery, and the profit would go to our clinic for our IVF. I chose to make giant triple chocolate chip cookies. I did the work off the clock, but it was definitely worth it!
  • Pinched Pennies. We had a lot of game nights at home. We’re homebodies anyway, so this wasn’t too hard! We didn’t make ourselves miserable, but by cutting back on a few “extra” things here and there, you can save a lot of money. Most of our friends understood and were happy to have cheap date nights with us!
  • Apply For Discount Drug Programs. Our clinic provided us with forms to apply to both First Steps and Compassionate Care discount programs. They’re income based IVF drug discount programs. Our nurse also suggested writing a cover letter and we were offered 25% off from both companies and these discounts are good for one year.

I’ve made friends with people who have gotten loans specifically for IVF/infertility treatments with low interest rates, so that’s another good option! There are also grants you can apply for. Another idea is to open a credit card that offers no interest for a certain amount of time. I’m a firm believer that if there is a will, there is a way!!

With all of these tips, we raised a huge chunk of the money that we needed for IVF. We couldn’t have done it otherwise. I know a lot of people never get to pursue IVF strictly due to the enormous cost, so I hope that this might give you some options before giving up!

Baby Dust!

– Chelsea

Finding My Tribe

Let’s take a moment to flashback to my life about 18 months ago. My husband and I had been trying to conceive for over a year and had recently started seeing a reproductive endocrinologist (RE). We had just finished our first (and only) IUI and it didn’t work. Unhappy with our current doctor’s bedside manner, we sought another opinion at the same clinic. We got the news that IVF would really be our only option to try to have a biological child. Other than that, we were looking at a less than a 5% chance, even with the
IUIs. Needless to say, my husband and I were feeling a little overwhelmed. We were also feeling pretty alone. Infertility and IVF aren’t things people talk too freely about, at least not yet anyway. I’m praying this is something that will change soon. Instead of Googling and reading outdated baby forums to get opinions/real life information, I began searching hashtags on Instagram. What I found was more than I could have ever imagined.

Little did I know that there was a huge trying to conceive community on Instagram. Women sharing their journeys in hopes of giving and receiving support and advice from other women going through the same things. The good, the incredibly bad, and all the nitty gritty details that doctors don’t tell you. Since I was very open with our struggles, I at first didn’t understand why most of the accounts were strictly IVF/infertility related. Not many women use their personal accounts for their trying to conceive accounts. Then it occurred to me that most of my “real life” friends might not want to see my posts about sperm, ovulation and PIO complaints. So I jumped on board and made my own “baby Instagram” as I so lovingly call it. I searched hashtags and would follow people going through similar situations as ours.

imageI cannot tell you how much this outlet has changed my life. You wouldn’t believe me, and it kind of sounds crazy, but these women have become some of my best friends. And not that I don’t have amazing friends, but it’s hard to relate to something like infertility if it hasn’t personally affected you. To be able to 100% share and feel with these women is amazing. I have a team of hundreds of cheerleaders! Just today, I had the honor to meet 21 of the women for a lunch. It was amazing. The strength and love these women have for each other is something I have never experienced before.

We do trying to conceive gift exchanges (lots of pineapples themed gifts), we lift each other up, cry with each loss, offer advice, prayers and understanding, and we always have each other’s backs. I’ve found multiple friends who actually go to the same clinic and even see the same doctor as me! What a small world! I know meeting strangers online sounds weird, but I’ve only had positive experiences. If I could change one thing, it would be that I found these women sooner. They have honestly changed my life.

This post was really just a chance to brag about my awesome tribe and encourage you to find yours! If you’re trying to conceive, check out some Instagram hashtags and see what you think! I can promise you it’s a great outlet. And you can be as private or open as you want. Some women never post photos of themselves and that’s totally cool! It’s up to you what to share or not. I’d love to post the picture of all my girls today, but like I said, some girls are more private, so I won’t be sharing to respect their privacy.

Baby Dust!

– Chelsea

Tri-Side Learn & Play Art Center from Little Partners {Review}

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My oldest daughter, who will turn four later this month, loves anything artsy-fartsy. Whether it’s coloring with crayons, colored pencils, markers or random pens she finds in the junk drawer (my fault), painting (especially on things she’s not supposed to), making things with Play Doh and clay, I really try to foster anything that she can do using her image4 (1)creativity. I also try to mesh learning and creativity together by including letters and numbers when we’re coloring or painting. So, I was thrilled when I got the opportunity to review the Tri-Side Learn & Play Art Center ($179.99) from Little Partners.

Little Partners is a company that makes products that enrich little ones and help nurture the relationship between parents and their children. The Tri-Side Learn & Play Art Center is designed to encourage young artists with special places to paint, color and play. There are three sides: a chalk board, felt board and a magnetic dry erase board. Underneath the dry erase board is a set of four spill-proof paint containers, making cleanup a breeze after a fun paint session. There are ledges under each board to organize image4all of your little one’s art supplies to make it easy for them to find and use. Included: a roll of paper, an eraser (used for both the chalkboard and dry erase board) and four paint containers.

FIrst thing’s first, we adore this easel. It’s super sturdy and I love that it’s made of real wood (layered pine) so it is made to last. My daughter (and my husband and I, too) have been having a blast painting, coloring, and playing on the boards together- we’ve been playing a lot of Hangman which brings back memories of playing in school. I’m trying to find letters, numbers and shapes for the felt board because there is a deep mesh holder under the felt board that can hold a lot and I think they’d be a fantastic learning tool. So if anyone knows where I can find some at a good price, please let me know in the comments! Each board is independently height adjustable, so it’s perfect for little ones to grow with. The paint cups are awesome and truly spill proof making clean up after my daughter paints her Picasso so easy. I love how this easel has really image1 (4)encouraged my daughter to be creative and use her imagination even more, she’s been having so much fun. It will be great to have this winter when we’re cooped up in the playroom.

There is one down fall. If you have ever purchased anything from Ikea, you know how difficult and time consuming it is to put it together. That is the comparison my husband used after putting the art center together. It took him over two hours to finally get it all put together (I offered to do it myself but he insisted and I’m so glad I didn’t have to do it). His biggest complaint was the labeling of the parts. They are labeled by numbers but certain pieces were labeled incorrectly, which took more time to find. Some of the screws didn’t fit the holes in the wood so he had to make the holes bigger by hand, again, taking up more time. He said it was a pain in the butt to get it together but he’s happy with the outcome and loves that our daughter is having so much fun with it. However, he said he will never take it apart.

All in all, I am very impressed with the art center, so I’m giving it a 4 out of 5 stars (only because of the problems my husband ran into while assembling it). The quality is superb and will definitely last, even after being beaten up by children. Check out the Little Partners website to see all of their amazing products like the popular Learning Tower and 3-in-1 Growing Step Stool, along with other great products! And you’re in luck if you’re interested in a Tri-Side Learn & Play Art Center for your little one! It’s on sale now through Labor Day for $149.99 (down from ($179.99). Click here to purchase!

Be sure to follow Little Partners on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram to stay updated with sales and new products!

– Casey

**BurritoBuzz received these products at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

Silikids Silimap Placemat {Review}

The moms here at Burrito Buzz have sampled several products from Silikids over the last several months. You can read about them here – Siliskin Sippy & Straw Cupthe Silibib, and Silicone Bags & Spoons. I was able to sample the Silimap from Silikids which is a folding silicone placemat for kids. I was immediately intrigued by it and knew my 3 year old would be the perfect little person to demo it. She is always asking questions and
81d9PyA56+L._SY679_wanting to try new things, so I was excited to see what she thought of this product. Plus, I knew she would be honest!

The Silimap is a silicone placemat that folds up for easy storing. This placemat is compact once it’s folded (7″x 4.5″x 0.75″), so it can fit into any purse, clutch, or diaper bag for perfect on-the-go usage. It is also great to use at home – we took it outside and used it on our patio table. Another unique feature of the Silimap, is that it can be colored on with washable marker and then wiped clean. So, when your kids are getting restless waiting for their food, they can instead stay busy right on their placemat! The placemat is made of silicone, which keeps it from sliding around and perfect for messy kiddos like mine who are all over the place. 20160715_105458

More perks include:

  • Dishwasher safe – I will admit, I have not tried this with the Silimap. To me, it’s easier just to wash it by hand than have it take up a bunch of room in my dishwasher
  • Available in two colors: clear or “sea” blue and large in size (18″x 14″)
  • Perfect learning tool featuring a geographic map of the United States
  • Can be drawn on with washable markers
  • 100% silicone – making it not a harbor for bacteria, BPA and DEHP free, resistant to high temperatures and hypo-allergenic

I was overall pleased with this product. My only complaint would be that it did not clean up as easily as I thought it would. I will be honest; I’m not certain how “washable” the markers were that my daughter used on it. I ended up soaking the placemat in soapy water and it came clean. My 3 year old really did enjoy being able t5FnjE1uVo color on it. It was perfect for her to use while I was getting her lunch ready and I can teach her about geography in the process – win!

 Check out Silikids to purchase the Silimap for $14.95 and to see their other unique products! You can also purchase the Silimap on Amazon by clicking here: Silikids Silimap.

– Megan

**Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

Should I Ask For Help When Trying to Conceive?

How long is too long to TTC without a doctor’s help? Obviously I am no doctor, but if you’re asking yourself this question, maybe my opinion will help ease your mind!

A simple Google search will probably lead you to an answer like these:

  • 1 year of trying if you’re under the age of 35
  • 6 months if you’re over the age of 35

Your OB/GYN might also stick to those guidelines. This might be very good advice too; I normally like to assume that doctors know what they’re talking about more than I do. For me though, I made my first “family planning” appointment with an OB/GYN after about 8 months of trying.

I did this because I wasn’t having regular periods. It’s extremely hard to chart your cycle when you don’t cycle (and a lot of wasted pregnancy tests.. and man, they expensive!). So my husband finally convinced me to go. They ended up offering us help and treatments right off the bat due to this. Turns out not having periods is very unhealthy and can lead to cancer. So if you’re reading this and haven’t had a period in over 90 days, please go see a doctor whether or not you’re trying to conceive.

I can’t say whether or not you’ll be offered help before a year, but I can say it doesn’t hurt to ask and be proactive. Especially if you truly think something is wrong. I’ve learned in this infertility journey that it really pays off to be well informed and to advocate for yourself. But you also need to trust your doctor and if you don’t, you need to find a new doctor that you can trust. There’s nothing wrong with going and asking for help! You’re not alone and needing a little help is nothing to be ashamed of. ❤

– Chelsea

Sophie la girafe: A must for little ones

Teething babies are the worst. Plan and simple, teething sucks. Sometimes you get lucky and have a baby that doesn’t show he or she is in pain, so you’d never even know they’re teething at all. My first daughter was like that; you’d never know she was cutting a tooth because she was still happy-go-lucky like she always was. My second daughter is a whole different story. Of course every baby is different but she is reeeeally unhappy FullSizeRender (95)lately. She’s working on her bottom two teeth and she’s just a fussy, drooling mess. I’ve tried silicone teething necklaces and bracelets that she likes to chew on when I’m holding her. But when I’m not holding, I’m won’t leave her alone (while I do the dishes or laundry) with a necklace.

Ever since my oldest was born almost four years ago, I’ve seen little ones always chewing on a rubber giraffe named Sophie. It seemed to be a big hit with babies and parents alike, but I never took the plunge and spent the $25 to get her one (being a stay at home mom and only having one income, things were and still are financially tight). But with my youngest being a tiny teething terror at a young age, I reached out to Vulli, who makes Sophie la girafe, to collaborate with Burrito Buzz on a review. They were FullSizeRender (97)sweet enough to send us a gift set with a Sophie la girafe for my youngest and flash cards for my oldest

As soon as I opened Sophie and washed her, I handed her to my almost five month old and she immediately snatched her by the leg and starting gnawing on her head. Sophie was so easy for her to handle and actually keep a hold of. The way the giraffe is shaped, with its long neck and legs, it allows for little hands to grab any part of it and bring it to their little mouths.

Sophie also has the cutest little face; I think she’s just adorable! In fact, her face has stayed the same since she was born in France in 1961. She’s made of 100% natural latex rubber, which comes exclusively from Hevea trees growing in Malaysia. Sophie is an award-winning toy not only with little ones and their parents, but among the toy industry as well. My one and FullSizeRender (96)only gripe with Sophie is that she squeaks like a dog toy which drives my dog, Mesa, insane. My oldest runs around squeaking as much as she can to taunt him. I know that one day he’s going to snatch her and it’ll be game over for our beloved Sophie. But we’re going to enjoy the relief it brings my baby until then.

Sophie came in a gift set ($31.28) that included flash cards for my almost four year old. She’s starting her second year of preschool and we’ve been working on letters and numbers all summer and these flashcards are perfect to continue practicing! They’re quality made with bright and colorful pictures. The 26 cards each have a unique picture on them so she can familiarize with the alphabet (A is for Apple with a picture of an apple, for example). They’ll be perfect for when she starts spelling words, too! I love that I can use these cards with the baby when she gets a little older to learn objects, letters, etc. Sophie la girafe’s picture is on the left hand corner of each card, which little ones will love as they can learn with their Sophie!

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Sophie is definitely be a permanent fixture (until Mesa gets her) in our house. I just love how easy it is for the baby to chew on her and our baby actually gets relief. I give Sophie la girafe and the gift set a 5 out of 5 stars. It’s the perfect gift for both toddlers and babies and a great gift  for baby showers. I totally get the hype of Sophie la girafe now, our family just adores her! I really wish I would have spent the $25 a few years ago; I know my oldest would have loved her just as much!

Be sure to chIMG_4191eck out Sophie la girafe website, as there are many more amazing products; gift sets, teethers and rattles, early learning toys, and bath, mealtime and travel products to name a few! We also have a discount code exclusively for Burrito Buzz readers, use code BURRITOBUZZ10 at checkout for 10% off your purchase! {Code valid until 9.17.16}

Don’t forget to follow Sophie on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter to stay updated on products and sales!

– Casey

**Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of product review. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

Stop trying to one-up the struggle…

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The comparison of struggle. Sometimes, it seems like parents are wanting to complain in a way that makes it seem like one person has it worse than the other. Like, “oh, your baby doesn’t sleep? Well, my baby is teething horribly which is so much worse.”

But I’ve said it before, where’s the empathy?

*Disclaimer: I’m addicted to ecards, which I’ll be using in abundance in this post.*

Why can’t one person’s struggle be acknowledged instead of mulled over and one-upped by another person’s struggle? babbleoneupper.png

And here’s the truth: we all have some kind of struggle going on. Whether we talk about it openly or not.

Even then, sometime I’ll just be in conversation and talking about a difficult phase we’ve been going through. Right now we’re dealing with some major toddler tantrums. Instead of saying “oh, I remember those days!” or “this too shall pass” or “it gets easier” or something uplifting, I often hear things like “he’ll be worse when he’s two!” “wait until he talks more…” blah blah blah.

When our son didn’t sleep, like at all, for 9 months, I got so much advice on things we should be doing. Like hello, I don’t enjoy being sleep deprived. If you think I hadn’t already tried those things, you are very wrong.

images.pngSo here’s what I’m getting at: it’s okay to identify and acknowledge someone else’s struggle without being upset that they aren’t facing your exact struggle. Sometimes we all just need to talk about what’s going on to get through the day.

A comparison I’ve heard recently: If you break your leg, you might scream that you’re in pain. In response, someone says to you “every bone in my body is broken!” But here’s the thing, the person with the broken leg is still in pain, whether or not it’s the same pain that you have or to the extent that you have it. It doesn’t make their issue any less of an issue.

This idea goes far beyond just parenting, but I’ve never before experienced such negativity and lack of compassion and empathy as I have since becoming a parent. 1338588890104_3927523.png

When someone takes the time to tell me their struggle these days, I try diligently to get on their level, to show that I care about their difficulties. And it’s impossible to always say the right thing, but I think that if we all try just a little harder to empathize we’ll be in much better shape. Our relationships will be stronger indefinitely.

– Katie

PlaSmart Smart Mat {Review}

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My 16 month old son loves his cars. Maybe almost as much as I loved playing cars with my younger brother when I was little. My brother and I had a cool car mat with streets and shops that we would play on for hours at a time. Though, it was located in his room instead of mine, which I still call bullshit on. As an adult, I hate real cars and how much they take from my bank account, but that doesn’t mean I don’t still love a good few hours of playing Hot Wheels with my son. I was thrilled that PlaSmart was sending BurritoBuzz some products, because I was really anxious to get one of their Smart Mats!

We set the Happyville Smart Mat up in our playroom and while my son doesn’t quite get the idea of the roads yet, he truly loves driving his cars on it. The mat is pretty large at 80 x 57 x 0.2 inches, which is way larger than the carpet one that I had when I was young.

It is lightweight, at only 2lbs and the base is made from EVA foam. IMG_2888

The graphics are phenomenal, and the ease of cleaning this mat makes it a great purchase (which I found out after my asshole cat decided to barf on it). The pattern does repeat three times, but most children won’t care or even notice.

This does take a few days to flatten out fully and it also needs to air out. The smell of paint/ink/chemicals when first opening this was extreme and made me a little wary but did go away within a day or two.

While I love the material and texture of the mat, it does damage very easily. My son has put several gouges into the mat already and if you have any pets with claws, you’re doomed and a carpet mat would probably be better for you. Still, toys endure wear and most things look like they’ve been abused after a toddler has played with them.

Traintown.pngThere is also another variation, the Traintown Smart Mat, that BurritoBuzz mom, Casey, received. She also agreed that it needed to air out for a day or two and the graphics are pretty awesome. Her little one likes to play with trains, so her little collection of trains were perfect to play with on her new mat. The graphics are printed three times on the train mat as well, but little Stella doesn’t mind. In fact she liked that mommy and daddy could both have the same “pink house” as she did.

Even with those few cons, I still think this mat is a great addition to our playroom. My son plays on this daily. The Happyville mat will run you around $25 and the Traintown mat is about $30, a pretty modest price for a car and train mat like this!

You can buy yours here:
Plasmart Happyville Smart Mat

Plasmart Traintown Smart Mat