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Monday, September 29, 2014

Sharing More Smiles with Kinder Canada #KinderMom

Over the last two years I've had many opportunities to share my love of Kinder Surprise with you all, along with lots of information on new toys, charitable partnerships and more from the fine folks at Kinder Canada. I'm also been very lucky to have been able to share these delicious chocolate treats and toys with family and friends throughout my time as Kinder Ambassador. And now I get to keep doing these things for another year!

I'm proud to announce that I will be continuing my relationship with Kinder Canada for the third year of the #KinderMom program. You can expect more news and updates from Kinder with a post here at least every other month. We may even have some giveaways to share as the year progresses, so keep an eye out!

Meanwhile, we are continuing to enjoy the Kinder chocolate and having fun putting together the little toys. This guy is our latest discovery. Aside from being just adorable, his head bears a paint brush, and his feet two palettes of paint!  The little charmer comes with two pictures to paint and instructions for making darker and lighter shades of pigment. Definitely good play value here. Boo has asked to bring him to school tomorrow for his art projects.

Kinder Surprise toy paintbrush

We haven't found any yet, but I know the newest toys from Kinder will be a huge hit. Starting September 5, Kinder Surprise eggs containing Transformers and Disney Fairies toys began appearing in stores! There are 8 Transformers and 10 Disney Fairies to collect in specially marked Kinder Surprise. I'll be looking for these for my Transformers fan; they'll be sure to bring a smile to his face.

Kinder toys Transformers Disney Fairies
images from Kinder Canada's Facebook page

How cute are those fairies? I have a nice collection of the Disney Princesses from earlier this year, and hope to add Fairies soon. Moms need a little pick-me-up now and then too. Tink would surely make me smile, and I'd give her a place of honour on my desk.

This morning I sent Boo off to school with a special treat in his lunch box. Monday mornings are never fun, and after a busy weekend he was pooped. So I tucked in a Kinder Surprise egg for him to find at lunchtime. It's great that these treats are safe for nut-free schools, so you can confidently sneak one in for a midday smile for your little one. They also make for great treats for classmates on your child's birthday or for any occasion when parents at your school send in goodies. Chocolate and a toy all in one - what could be better?
bento lunch box
I know it's an odd lunch, but he eats very little because his medication destroys his appetite.
I give him options to pick at and then he eats when he gets home.
I like to add a little note or a picture as well on the whiteboard.
How do you share smiles with your kids? What are some ideas to help make the transition to fall and school a little more fun?

DISCLOSURE: I’m a #KinderMom, part of the KINDER® Canada influencer team; as part of my affiliation with KINDER® Canada, I am provided with special perks and products. All thoughts and opinions on this blog, as always, remain my own.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Somebody's Expecting ... Well, Sort Of. It's Mabel!

What's that you say? Mabel's got a bun in the oven!? Again?!

If you have a wee baby in tow, you know how much gear you drag around everywhere. And how easy it can be to leave a piece behind at a playdate or baby music circle. To make sure all those bottles and blankets and binkies get home safely, you need the newest addition to Mabel's family of labeling products.

Starting today, you can get a sneak peek at Mabel's Labels latest product - their new Baby Combo - before the official due date. This preview is an exclusive offer and the Baby Combo will not be released on the Mabel's Labels site until October 1st.

The combo is available in 40+ designs and includes 21 Tag Mates, 16 Skinny-Minis, 15 Sticky Labels and more. Be sure to check out this new combo and pre-order yours today! This pre-sale offer ends on Tuesday, September 30, at 11:59pm EDT.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links. All opinions on this blog, as always, remain my own.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Stampin' Up - Adding Some Handmade to Your Next Celebration {Giveaway}

School is back in session, and, along with the books and homework, the invitations to the class birthday parties are starting to roll in. I'm seeing more of a trend towards kids choosing a charity to support with their party, where guests make a donation to the cause in lieu of a gift. This is such a wonderful idea, encouraging children to appreciate what they already have as well as developing an understanding of the importance of giving back and helping others who aren't as fortunate.

But even when we attend a party where gifts aren't allowed we like to bring a special card for the birthday child to let them know we're thinking of them. And Boo especially enjoys making these cards himself, with his own personal touches. He's been using construction paper, markers, sparkles and stickers up til now. Last week though we tried out something new - a card making kit from Stampin' Up.

The Stampin' Up Everyday Occasions Kit comes with a great variety of 20 card blanks in different sizes and patterns, along with pre-cut embellishments, twine, clips, adhesive dots, and more. Boo particularly liked the sparkle embellishments. I have some super crafty friends who have machines to cut their own designs, but pre-cut is more my speed. Hearts, feathers, banners, labels and more to decorate your cards and envelopes. I played around and put this simple card together in a couple of minutes. The most difficult part was choosing from among all the beautiful patterns.

The embellishments can be applied with the sticky dots for a raised effect. I used those on the banner but grabbed a glue stick for the hearts.

Boo made this card for his friend's birthday. There wasn't a party, but we were spending the day after his special day with him, so Boo wanted to acknowledge it with a card. He was keen to use the stamps, so he chose this Happy Birthday message and applied it to a banner for the front of his card. The stamp kit came with two colours of ink pads and a set of stamps including phrases such as "Congratulations" and "Thinking of You." Lots of options for different occasions.

Notice the 8 year-old boy fingerprint - neither the giver for the recipient seemed to mind. Boo used a sparkle circle to fancy up the envelope as well. This kid loves glitter!

These cards were so easy and quick to make. Since everything is pre-cut and your adhesives are either the sticky dots (Stampin' Spots to use their real name) or a glue stick there's really no mess. Unless you get your 8yo fingers into the ink. And you end up with a unique creation your recipient is sure to appreciate. Given the number of birthdays I'm sure we'll be looking at in the coming months, I expect this kit will see a lot of use!

For more information on Stampin' Up and their full line of products, you can visit their website or connect with them on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.

A Giveaway

One lucky Raising My Boys reader will receive a Stampin' Up kit, just like the one I've been enjoying. It is valued at approximately $100 and includes:
  • 1 Everyday Occasions Cardmaking kit – cardstock and envelopes for 20 cards, twine, buttons and clips, precut paper embellishments, Stampin’ Spots, 7-piece Occasions 
  • 1 Stamp Set & clear stamp block, full color Tips & Tricks brochure for making the cards and a cool, storable, giftable box. 
  • 1 Documented Journal from the This And That collection – debossed chipboard cover and 60 total printed sheets 
  • 1 Rotary stamp – includes dates and 12 clever and useful phrases
Entries for this great prize are via the Rafflecopter widget below and will be accepted until 12:00 midnight EDT, October 10. Giveaway is open to Canadian residents only, including Quebec. Best of luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I received complimentary product to facilitate this review. No other compensation was received. All opinions on this blog, as always, remain my own.
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