3 Non-Food Easter Gift Ideas For Kids

Looking for something to stuff the Easter baskets with that won’t give kids a sugar high and rot their teeth out? We’ve got a few ideas to help! You’re welcome.

Idea #1: BOOKS

First off, just out this month is Cynthia Bardes latest children’s book, Pansy in Paris: A Mystery at the Museum

pansy in paris

My kids (boy 3, girl 6) thoroughly enjoyed this book and asked me to read it again when it was over. It really is a cute story with delightful artwork. This is definitely one children’s book worth checking out. There are more books in the “Pansy” series as well that we can’t wait to read. Visit www.cynthiabardes.com or click here to read more about the author and her dog Pansy (a real-life poodle!).

BUY IT: Get Pansy In Paris on Amazon ($14.99)



What little girl doesn’t love nail polish? I know my 6 1/2 year old daughter absolutely LOVES polishing her nails. She’s always begging to use the computer so she can get on Pinterest and check out fancy nail art. Luckily, we found Totally Cool Nails: 50 Fun and Easy Nail Art Designs for Kids


Of course we decided to try out BUNNIES first! The instructions were simple and easy to follow and clear pictures showed the step by step progression to it’s completion. We were both very happy with the result and she got tons of compliments, of course!

I enjoyed it because it was a great mother/daughter activity for us. We can’t wait to try the ombre dot, splatter, cupcake, flip-flop, and union jack nails. This would be a great book for a sleepover too!

BUY IT: Get Totally Cool Nails on Amazon or in your local bookstore ($12)


Idea #3: MOVIES

I’m sure every kid on the planet already owns a copy of Frozen, so why not get them something a little different.

iesodo dvd covers

Meet Iesodo, (YAY-sa-doe) a highly acclaimed Telly and Accolade Award winning series featuring a cast of animated birds who live in a Cypress Tree on the shores of Galilee.

As soon as I saw the cover of the DVD for this series, I immediately thought of Rio! My kids loved that movie so I knew they would be interested in Iesodo. The movie has cutting edge imagery that is somewhat unexpected for a Christian DVD series. Click here to read our review of the DVDs.

With each and every story in the series, Iesodo and his cute feathered friends “present the essence of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in a winsome, compelling way” through music and adventure (MovieGuide.org).

BUY IT: Get Iesodo DVDs on Amazon ($14.99 each)


Loving The FabFitFun Spring VIP Beauty Box


It’s finally here!

The FabFitFun VIP Spring 2014 Box has arrived!

This season’s box is packed with $217 worth of amazing goodies including hot items like Oscar Blandi Dry Shampoo ($25), Cover FX SPF30 Protection Primer ($38) and a Dermasuri Deep Exfoliating Mitt ($20) which I can’t wait to try out!!


One of my favorite items in this season’s box is definitely the full size vial of Kai Perfume Oil (Valued at $48). This intaxicating perfume oil fragrance is made with essential oils and comes in a convenient roll on vial. It’s the perfect mix of floral and woodsy scents that makes for the perfect spring fragrance.

My second favorite item in the box is the Gaia Cult Turband in a gorgeous floral spring print. It’s the go-to accessory for an instant good hair day, any day. I am loving it and so is my six year old daughter, who promptly stole it from me the first time she laid eyes on it…


Of course there are a few other really special items in this Spring’s box, but you’ll just have to get your OWN box to see what’s inside!

Use the exclusive coupon code SUMMER5 to get $5 off the upcoming FabFitFun Summer VIP Box. (Valid until July 15.)


Boost Your Confidence with Healthier, Whiter Teeth

white teeth 01


When’s the last time you smiled? Be honest, it’s been a while, hasn’t it? It’s because your smile doesn’t look all that great. But, you don’t have to remain hidden from the world. You don’t have to cover your mouth every time you’re happy or you want to laugh. You can learn to smile again, with confidence. Here’s how.


Tooth Whitening


DW_kit_0There are a large variety of tooth whitening products available now that are easy to use and affective, like Whitening Lightening Super Booster Pens ($75). You can also find affordable tooth whitening products in the REMBRANDT® DEEPLY WHITE® Collection like their 2-Hour Whitening Kit for $20 and their mouthwash and toothpaste for only $7 each.


Not everyone can achieve the desired results with at-home products though. Professionals have better quality products, processes, and they have the skill and experience to do a good job.


Cosmetic dentistry is like any other skill. It takes time to perfect. So, unless you are willing to invest in dentistry-grade materials, don’t bother. You’ll end up with less-than-stellar results. With that being said, even professional whitening isn’t without its drawbacks. Because the whitening process effectively etches the outer layer of the tooth and damages it.


So, whitening products need to be reapplied periodically to maintain the tooth’s luster. Still, if your teeth are irreparably stained or damaged, whitening could be the best option for you. Just make sure you understand both the risks and the benefits.




Veneers are wafer-thin shells of tooth-colored materials that are bonded to your teeth to improve the appearance of them. Usually, they are made of porcelain, but they can also be made of other materials that are strong and durable.


Veneers tend to be pricey, so make sure you do some research online to find pages like Manhattan veneers before deciding on the procedure. What to look for: your dentist should diagnose you and give you a treatment plan. This usually means x-rays are taken of your teeth and you’ll get impressions of your mouth and teeth.


The preparation phase involves removing about a millimeter of the enamel from your tooth’s surface. This thickness is equal to the veneer. So, when it’s all said and done, the veneer should sit flat with your tooth. The mold for the veneers is sent off to a lab and it takes about 1 to 2 weeks for the dentist to receive it.
The bonding process is the last step in the process. Before the veneer is permanently cemented to your tooth, your dentist will temporarily place it on your tooth and check the fit and the color. Both can be adjusted with tools right there in the office, and with the bonding cement that will be used.


Once the fit and color are perfect, your dentist cleans and polishes your tooth, and the veneer is applied. Finally, a special curing light is used to harden the cement. Your dentist may then want to schedule a followup visit to assess the veneer, and how your gums are reacting to it.




Braces are used to straighten teeth, and they can correct some very serious misalignment issues. While there are many different types, the two most common are lingual braces and traditional metal wired braces. The lingual braces are fixed to the back of the teeth and cannot be easily seen from the front – good if you’re self-conscious about having them in. Traditional metal braces are fixed using stainless steel wires and hardware – these are the types of braces you’ve probably seen before, and have come to fear and loath.


Newer braces, like invisalign, can also correct mild misalignments, but they’re not effective for extensive correction. Your dentist should assess your situation and give you all of the alternatives that are appropriate for your circumstance.


GUEST BLOGGER: Robert Ander is a people person with a passion for healthy smiles. As a recently retired dentist, he especially enjoys writing about oral health and dental options for all ages.


Welcome Spring with A Natural, Fruity Fragrance!

lavanila spring spritz

It’s finally the first day of SPRING!!!! Get ready for warmer weather with a fresh new scent from one of our favorite fragrance brands – Lavanila! With invigorating scents like Vanilla Lemon and Vanilla Grapefruit (my personal favorite!) you can at least pretend it’s spring, even thought it really doesn’t feel like it quite yet!!!!!

Not only does Lavanila create luscious and enjoyable scents, but they work them into healthy products like Healthy Deodorant that is aluminum free and luxurious Body Butter that deeply nourishes skin with natural ingredients.

Not sure which scent to choose? Don’t pick one, get three spring scents in one convenient Rollerball Trio for just $39!

Now excuse me while I go indulge in some Vanilla Grapefruit fragrance….

PANTONE Color Of The Year 2014 – Radiant Orchid

radiant orchid color of the year

What PANTONE Has To Say About Radiant Orchid:

Radiant Orchid blooms with confidence and magical warmth that intrigues the eye and sparks the imagination. It is an expressive, creative and embracing purple—one that draws you in with its beguiling charm. A captivating harmony of fuchsia, purple and pink undertones, Radiant Orchid emanates great joy, love and health.

Being a redhead, I’m not super elated about this being the color of the year since it definitely does NOT go with red hair. However, I think Radiant Orchid is an extremely beautiful color and it didn’t take me any time at all to find a handful of fun items in this spring-ready color!

[Read more...]

Get Green With Envy Over These Yummy Treats!

Whether you are Irish or not, everyone needs a little GREEN on St Patrick’s Day!

Here are a few of our favorite brand’s GREENEST and finest offerings…


Green With Envy
Green With Envy by thehousewife featuring Caroline Hill Collection & Urban Decay


New Natural Brand “be Delectable” from Cake Beauty

be Delectable

be Delectable is a new collection of bath & body products from Cake Beauty that will be sold at Kohl’s stores across the USA and online at kohls.com.

Made with all natural ingredients, these uniquely formulated bath and beauty products come in some very decadent scents including Strawberry & Cream, Lemon & Cream, Coconut & Cream, and Vanilla & Cream. Of course, the sweet packaging makes these products a bit irresistible! Choose from body polish, body wash, body mist, hand cream and body lotion.

I was lucky enough to get my hands on some of the Coconut & Cream products and I have to say, my entire family fell in love. My almost 7 year old daughter is obsessed with everything cupcakes, so naturally, she was immediately smitten upon seeing the cute bottles and graphics. My son who is almost 4 years old, loves anything coconut so he was eager to try the lotion. (He LOVES putting lotion on his feet.) My husband, who usually doesn’t like coconut, surprisingly has been using the hand cream every single night. Of course, I am happy with all the products and could never resist anything coconut scented either. We all love coconuts!

be delectable

The part I like the best about this new line is that on top of smelling absolutely heavenly, it’s made with all natural ingredients. Be Delectable is as good for your skin as for the environment. Their luxurious formulas are never tested on animals and are made with up to 95% natural products. Best of all, they are free of Parabens, Sodium Chloride, Phthalates, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, GMOs, Mineral Oil, Petrolatum, Gluten and Triclosan. Yay!

Be sure to look for be Delectable products next time you are in Kohl’s or head over to kohls.com. Good luck picking just ONE scent to try! I think you are going to want to try all four decadent scents…

Products range in price from $10 – $14. Find out more at CakeBeauty.com

* The product for this review was provided to us free of charge for the purpose of product testing. This does not effect our opinion of the products in any way. We only write about products we personally like and use, regardless of how they were acquired.