Minivan Mama

I officially gained my “soccer mom” status this summer when we traded in my little blue SUV for a MINIVAN. And let me tell you, it was one of the best decisions I have ever made!! It’s true love. I knew I 17194_600always wanted a minivan someday, because I grew up with my parents always having one, and it always just seemed like the most practical with kiddos. What I didn’t know is how much I would not miss my old car and absolutely love this van!

My husband I had been talking about them for a while and finally buckled down and started researching them after we had our second child. We were tired of not having a lot of room in the car especially if we needed to take any extra people anywhere. Two car seats take up a lot of space. We looked at several minivans on the market, but narrowed it down to the Toyota and Honda. We did have a rental Chrysler that we were happy with as well. After test driving, we were actually surprised at how easy the decision was with the Honda Odyssey. The vans were priced roughly the same, but the Honda just felt like it was made better. We didn’t dislike the Toyota (my hubby drives a Toyota Tundra), but the Honda was just better.

 

 

We waited several weeks for the specific model and color to come in that we wanted, but once it arrived, it was love at first sight. I was so anxious and excited that Saturday morning we were able to go and pick it up with the kids. Our 3 year old was excited for the “new van!” too. It was bittersweet leaving our old SUV, but there are new reasons every day why I am so thankful to be a minivan mama now . . .

Here’s a few of them . . .

1.       The automatic sliding side doors… need I say more?! I don’t have to worry about my kids or I banging any cars parked next to us with our doors. You know how loading and unloading our kiddos goes, these door make it a dream come true!! Because of the sliding doors, the opening is so much bigger than an average car door – WONDERFUL! The doors also open and close by the simple push of a button from either the key fob, by the driver’s seat, or on the inside of the sliding doors themselves.

 

2.       Not only is there more room in the doorways, there’s more room EVERYWHERE in this car. I can honestly say I’ve been a passenger in every seat and never once did I feel like I had no space to move. And if you need more room . . . You can MAKE more room . . .

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3.       . . . You can make that extra space because of the movable seats. I know this is typical with most minivans and vehicles with a third row of seats, but the way the Honda was set up was another big selling point for me. Our Odyssey has the option to have an eighth seat. All of the seats are removable (except the front), but with the Odyssey you can have an eighth seat in the middle of the second row. You can easily remove that middle seat of the second row to have 2 captains chairs and an aisle way to the back row, or you can leave it in place to complete the row and have an extra seat. The seat also folds down as an arm rest if it’s left in place. The third row of seats EASILY folds down into the trunk of the van. When we drove to the beach this summer, we opted to fold the third row down so we had TONS of room for luggage and could still see out the back window.

 

4.       Handles on the high way – We drove the minivan on the West Virginia turnpike on our way to Myrtle Beach this past summer, and it handled so much better than my husband’s truck the year before. We could set the cruise control and not have to waver and hit the brake on those winding highway turns.

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5.       Good on gas – I know the gas tank in the minivan is bigger than my tank was in my SUV, but I swear still that the van gets better gas mileage. According to Honda, the Odyssey gets 19 mpg on city streets and 27 mpg highway. Either way, its way better on gas than a huge SUV would be!

 

6.        Does NOT ride like a bus – I traded in a small SUV for my minivan. I had driven it for 5 years. I will say that I was the most anxious that the minivan was going to feel like I was driving a bus after driving my little SUV. I was so wrong. The van does not feel any bigger to me. I would say it sits up off the road the same height as my old car. Even though the van is significantly longer, I really haven’t noticed other than making sure I pull in the garage far enough. The back-up camera has made this easier as well!

 

7.       Bang for the Buck – I’m telling you, you cannot beat a minivan. Even if you have a small family like we do, it is worth considering. For some reason, they get a bad rap, but I can’t think of one negative thing to say about mine. Maybe I don’t look the “coolest” driving the minivan around, but that is the last thing I’m worried about. Most companies offer all the bells and whistles you can find in luxury cars and SUVs, so don’t think those options aren’t available in a van. It’s convenient, affordable, and I know my kids are safe – that’s what matters to me.

If you’re thinking about getting a new vehicle for your new family, growing family, or just want more seats/space, take a look at a minivan. Check out all the options. Take them for a test drive. I think you’ll love it! And if you take the plunge like we did and buy one, you won’t regret it!

-Megan

 

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Book Review: Dreaming in Color {The Adventures of Oliver Poons}

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Author, Lauryn Alyssa Wendus, is at it again with a new children’s book featuring her star character, Oliver Poons! You might remember my previous review about Lauryn’s first book, Oliver Poons and the Bright Yellow Hat. If not, you can read it here! My daughter was nearly 3 at the time, but she really enjoyed the first book, so I was not surprised that she was excited to read another Oliver Poons book. Not only that, my younger son (16 months) was excited about the new “kitty book” too!

Lauryn does a fabulous job telling a simple, rhyming bedtime story about Oliver Poons and his pals working together to bring colors back into Oliver’s dreams. It’s a perfect story for little ones, because the rhyming keeps them interested. Kids are introduced to new animals and colors throughout the story, which is great, too. The same characters are brought back from the firsoliver-poons-dreaming-in-color-cover-600px-510x510t book of the series, so in our house, we often can’t read one book without the other. My oldest is into longer stories “with lots of pages, Mom!” nowadays, but she still remained interested in this book and I love that now my youngest can read along with us.

Lauryn’s mother, Lois Wendus, is the book’s illustrator and she does a beautiful job again in this second book. I just love the mother-daughter duo behind this series and their mission, “our products are designed to inspire a happy day and happy dreams for your child.” And it’s not only about their products bringing joy and smiles, but the Oliver Poons Children’s Company also supports children and animal rescue by donating a portion of their proceeds to organizations like Mission for Orphans, Inc. and No Kitten Left Behind. They also have a campaign right now (#YellowHatsforCats) where they donate a portion of their sales to various animal shelteroliver-poons-childrens-co-logos to raise awareness about animal rescue.

You can find both books of the series online in hardcover, paperback, or an ebook version. You can purchase the hardcover book for $19.95 on the books’ site or here on Amazon. There are other items available on the Oliver Poons website, too. Workbook learning activities, an interactive floor game, Oliver Poons artwork, and even the floppy yellow hat itself are available for purchase on the website.

These books would make a wonderful Christmas gift for any little one, especially those who adore cats like mine! You can feel good about giving these books to a loved one because not only are they receiving a fun loving, adorable read, but somewhere else another little kiddo or kitty will also be a little happier too!

Follow Lauryn and learn more about the adventures of Oliver Poons on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

– 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 with a product 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.**

BurritoBuzz is ONE & we’re having a HUGE GIVEAWAY to celebrate!

one-year-todayWe are so incredibly thankful for our readers! If it weren’t for all of you, we would not be here today! We have grown so much in just one year and we cannot wait to see what the next year brings!

As a big thank you, we have put together a pretty amazing giveaway from some of our favorite companies that we have worked with this past year.

ONE LUCKY WINNER WILL WIN ALL OF THESE AWESOME PRIZES:

Finding Dory – Little Sound Book From: PI Kidslarge_9781503705326.jpg

FunBites Food Cutter From: FunBitesuntitled.png

Baby in Tow Spoon Cocoon in Grape From: Baby in Tow14a50161513bb63141c4c82b24d85228.jpgFour in one Nursing Cover!

From: Covered Goodsfullscreen-capture-5252016-33452-pm-bmp

NurturMe Gift Set From: NurturMenurturme.jpgGift set includes:

1 bag organic quinoa baby cereal

1 pouch of NurturMeal blend + NurturMeal quinoa

1 Yum-A-Roo toddler snacks

1 reuseable eco-pouch

1 BPA free baby spoon 

1 coupon

1 informative quinoa bookmark

MAM Feed & Soothe Set From: MAMmam-147_1z

pediped Originals

pediped Originals come size 0-6, 6-12, 12-18, and 18-24 months. Winner picks boy or girl.

A pair will be in this giveaway and there will be one next month, too! Keep an eye out!

 

ergoPouch ergoCocoon Swaddle to Sleep Bag From: ergoPouch

 

Kacenda Silicone Placemat From: Kacenda91DksO27dTL._SX522_.jpg

This amazing giveaway is valued over $180, all for one loyal follower!

How to enter to win it all:

  1. Follow BurritoBuzz on Instagram here.
  2. Like the giveaway post on Instagram.
  3. Follow these 6 companies that are involved in our giveaway below:
    1. FunBites
    2. Covered Goods
    3. NurturMe
    4. MAM
    5. pediped
    6. ergoPouch
  4. Tag a friend! One tag per comment please.

That’s it! We will be triple checking to make sure all rules are followed!

Giveaway begins Monday, September 26th at 8am and ends on Friday, September 30th at 8am. One winner will be announced shortly after giveaway ends. Goodluck and be sure to share with friends! **This giveaway is in no way sponsored by Instagram.**

Thanks for sticking with us for our first year!

– The BurritoBuzz Moms

CeraVe Baby {Review}

groupI love finding and trying new baby care products, especially lotions and washes, as I want to find the best and healthiest products for my infant and toddler. For myself, I love CeraVe products. They make my skin feel so good and I love knowing they’re not loaded with harmful chemicals and parabens. On a recent shopping trip I saw that CeraVe now makes baby products and I was excited to try them on my 11 week old. I reached out to Valeant Consumer Products (who developed the CeraVe Baby skin care products) and they were kind enough to send me all of the baby products in their line to try. The baby line was developed with pediatric dermatologists to help protect and maintain baby’s delicate skin barrier. All of the CeraVe Baby products have been awarded the National Eczema Association Seal of Acceptance and are hypoallergenic and fragrance-, paraben-, gluten-, sulfate- and phthalate-free.

CeraVe Baby Sunscreen SPF 45 // Retail price: 3.5 oz tube – $16.99

Although my baFullSizeRender (4)by isn’t in the sun quite yet, I was eager to try the sunscreen on my 3.5 year old. So far this year, every sunscreen I have tried has made her break out in a rash which has never happened before. And because she is always outside playing in the summer, I needed to find something that could protect her but also not make her break out and needing a dose of Benedryl each night before bed. CeraVe Baby Sunscreen worked! No rash, no sunburn after several hours in the sun. If she plays in water, I will need to reapply every 80 minutes to make sure she was covered. The lotion is white and thick enough to know here you are applying which is key if you don’t want to miss any spots. It’s formulated with natural sourced ingredients: 7.4% titanium dioxide, 11.4% zinc oxide, soothing aloe and essential ceramides to help repair and restore the protective barrier. Available at: CVS, Walgreens, DuaneFullSizeRender (3) Reed, Wal-Mart, Meijer, Babies R Us, Buy Buy Baby and Amazon.

CeraVe Baby Moisturizing Cream // Retail price: 5  oz tube – $9.99

This heavenly, thick moisturizing cream is the bee’s knees! It keeps baby’s skin moisturized and protected for up to 24 hours and is formulated for baby’s with sensitive skin or eczema. My 9 week old doesn’t have sensitive skin or eczema but I want to use a product that is gentle on her delicate skin and this fits the bill. She feels so soft and smooth after applying and I love that I don’t have to reapply several times throughout the day, once is enough! It has been designed to use on the face and body and utilizes a patented Multivesicular Emulsion (MVE) technology, which allows for a controlled and steady release of ingredients over time. Available at: CVS, Meijer, Rite Aid, Babies R US, Buy Buy Baby and Amazon.

CeraVe Baby Wash & Shampoo // Retail price: 8 oz tube – $9.99

FullSizeRender (5)My 9 week old gets a bath every other day and almost always has some (gross) formula trapped in her neck rolls (she’s a chubby one) and I love that the baby wash & shampoo gets her squeaky clean, smelling good and keeps her skin hydrated. It’s so gentle on baby’s hair and skin and is fragrance and tear free so it protects her little eyes as well. It contains three essential ceramides, hyaluronic acid and vitamins that work to lock in and restore moisture in the skin. Free of parabens, sulfates, phthalates and dyes leaving baby with nothing but healthy hair and skin! Available at: drugstores, mass market retailers and specialty baby retailers nationwide.

FullSizeRender (6)CeraVe Baby Moisturizing Lotion // Retail price: 8 oz pump – $9.99

I love CeraVe lotions so much and the baby lotion did not disappoint! It keeps baby’s skin so soft and hydrated for up to 24 hours which means less application and the bottle will last longer, in turn saving you money! As much as I love scented lotions, I love that this is fragrance free which is better for baby’s skin. It also temporarily relieves chafed, chapped and cracked skin so baby is always protected. Available at: drugstores, mass market retailers and specialty baby retailers nationwide.

CeraVe Baby Diaper Rash Cream // Retail price: 3 oz tube – $9.99

FullSizeRender (7)Luckily, my 9 week old hasn’t had many (if any) diaper rashes in her short life. I chalk it up to putting cream on her behind every single diaper change as a preventative measure. I love that it’s non-greasy but it’s thick and creamy without causing a sticky mess that most creams leave behind. A little goes a long way so the tube lasts a while. The cream contains dimethicone to help protect chafed skin, while also sealing out wetness. InvisableZinc works to sooth and prevent future diaper rashes. Available at: drugstores, mass market retailers and specialty baby retailers nationwide

If you love CeraVe products, you will love CeraVe Baby products! I am so impressed with the quality and effectiveness in every single product they offer. The sunscreen if for sure a daily staple in our household from now on. Well, they all are actually. It’s our new go-to line for shampoo, lotion and diaper cream. If you’re interested in trying CeraVe Baby for your little one, click here for a $2 off any CeraVe product coupon!

– 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.**