Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Kael&Kaed Un-Paper Towels Review and Discount Code

I was selected back in February to review a new product made by Kael&Kaed, which happened to be something I was really wanting to try, but too cheap to make a formal purchase. I was sent 4 un-paper towels (meaning, cloth and reusable VS paper and trash). I'll elaborate what I mean by being to cheap to make a formal purchase of un-paper towels, by saying that I've basically picked up a back of 12 washcloths from the local dollar store for about $3, and that's what I use for "un-paper towels" around the house. For cleaning, for wiping dirty faces, hands, and messes. Even for draining fried foods. Sure, they aren't anything cute to look at, but they do the job! So being able to try something that is cute to look at was just icing and sprinkles on a long waiting cake.

Aside from the cotton prints, and the super soft woven fabric on the opposite side, I love that these un-paper towels have snaps. If you're new to these like I was, you're probably wondering right now why on earth there are snaps on a piece of cloth that's to be used as a paper towel. Well, it's actually a pretty genius idea, especially in a family environment where people will be looking for a roll of paper towels, not a stack of cloths. Yeah, that's right, it's to snap the towels together so they can be formed into a roll.

The only problem I had was that these were so much smaller than a paper towel (measuring 6.5"x10" each), that even with 2 layers of cloth I didn't find them to absorb very much. Not that I wouldn't use them, but this smaller size worked best for wiping dirty tables or countertops, or cleaning up the baby, instead of soaking up a spill.

Aside from that, they have made a permanent addition to out kitchen. Tasha, the mama behind the scenes at Kael&Kaed would like to offer you all 20% off instock items in her shop, by using code JUNE20OFF.

You can visit Kael&Kaeds' shop (and use the discount code), and "like" them on Facebook :-)

DISCLAIMER: We were sent the product(s) mentioned in this post for review purposes only. We were not offered monetary compensation for review, and our opinion is 100% our own. 

Monday, June 4, 2012

Prayer and Thought Request

I know it seems like things are always up and down around our household, but I need some support from anyone willing to help. Jer has been suffering from back pain and swelling since he was last home 2 weeks ago. He was diagnosed with a pulled muscle and sent back on the road with an anti-inflammatory medication. Through his phone calls each day he expressed how nothing was helping and made an appointment to be seen when he came home again. He made it home last Friday but couldn't get into the clinic until this morning. He had an ultrasound to check if he was having issues with his gallbladder but the tests came back negative. Another appointment this afternoon, he was given x-rays, which showed fluid filling his right lung and part of his left, as well as starting to surround his heart. A consult with another Dr in the clinic and a call to a Dr (which happens to be my dads Dr) from an entirely different clinic/hospital group gave the potential diagnosis of either Lupus or Leukemia. 

Jer is going in for surgery tomorrow afternoon so the surgeon can attempt to remove as much fluid as possible from his lungs and heart, and explore the area for a potential mass that may also be in the area of swelling on his back.

Please keep him in your prayers, and you don't pray, just please think of him and that he makes it through everything alright tomorrow. Please hope/pray that his health is not as terrible as they are thinking it is, and if it really is Lupus or Leukemia, that they are able to treat him and his health doesn't deteriorate.

The few years we've been able to be together and start a family together has been the best of both our lives. I ask you all to please use the power of thought and prayer to keep us together as a family, and for a quick recovery for Jer.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Booty Buns #clothdiapers Review and Giveaway

You may remember reading about Booty Buns Cloth Diapers when I participated in their huge "Go Green, Give Charity" Giveaway. After participating in the giveaway and reading more about the company, I decided I just had to try one of their diapers out for myself! So I contacted them, and they were more than happy to help me out :-)

There are a few things I loved right away, before even trying out the diaper on Gabe. First, the extra set of rise snaps. Most One-Size diapers have 3, sometimes 4 rise settings, which is sufficient after the "newborn" stage of diapers, or after 8-12 pounds depending on the brand. Booty Buns are a true OS diaper, from the feature of 5 rise settings. Their pocket diapers will fit most babies from 3 pounds up until 45 pounds. Yes, you saw that right, they can fit already at THREE POUNDS!

Photo Courtesy of
 Of course the other immediate favorite feature of mine is the suede-cloth inner. There seems to be a fine line in the world of pockets between mamas who love fleece and those who love suede-cloth. Of course there are some who love both, but I'm a suede-cloth lovin' mama! For me, it washes up so much easier, as in, it rarely holds onto stains. It still feels so soft and smooth after many washes. Fleece always gets so pilly for me after just one or two washes, and pockets with fleece inners always seem to wick for us too. I've never had wicking with a suede-cloth pocket.
The only thing better than a suede-cloth pocket now, is a suede-cloth pocket with double gussets! Yep, Booty Buns have that too! As well as a double opening, which means no more pulling out dirty inserts before washing. Just toss the dirty dipe in your diaper pail, and let your washer do ALL the work ;-)

Photo Courtesy of
 Booty Buns also includes a super soft cloth wipe, and a nice smooth flannel liner with each of their diapers.Both were so soft to the touch (and of course, to my little mans' bum), and seem to hold up nicely. The wipe has made it into my regular wipe stash, and the liner is my single favorite liner we now own. I love the idea of fleece liners, but I hate that much bulk in a pocket. I also love the idea of disposable liners, but I think they are far too thin to be using with something that can bond to your diaper make it repel. I never would have though to use flannel! Genius! Booty Buns recommends using a flannel liner to help clean up when your baby poops, and the flannel is said to be a nice barrier for babies who may be sensitive to suede-cloth.

There are 2 inserts included with the Booty Buns OS Pocket, both microfiber, both have a snap to snap it into the top of the diaper to prevent shifting, but one is a newborn size while the other is more medium size. Because of our shared laundry room, I usually end up with stinky microfiber. I tried these inserts a few times, and while they worked just fine, I have swapped them out for an infant-size prefold. The microfiber is more trim, but I feel like cotton washes up a bit better.

Gabriel has always been a pretty easy baby to find diapers for. He never hit that "chunky baby" stage, and wasn't really tiny as a newborn (a little over 8 pounds...) so everything fit him. However, I still love the adjust-ability of Booty Buns. I cannot wait to be able to test this on a newborn. (Shh! That's a post for another day!)

Overall this diaper really didn't have much that I didn't like:
  • Highly adjustable, fits babies ranging in weight from 3-45 pounds
  • Suede-cloth inner
  • Double gussets
  • Comes in snaps, which, ultimately, last longer than most other parts of the diaper itself (lol)
  • Comes in a wide variety of colors
  • A wipe and liner are included with each diaper, cutting down on the need to order more accessories
  • Booty Buns donates 1 diaper to charity for each diaper sold
  • Has a double pocket opening so inserts agitate out in the wash
  • Microfiber inserts - although I know a lot of moms LOVE them ;)
  • Does not have a hook-and-loop option, which may turn off someone new to cloth unsure about snaps
Considering the very wide weight range and extra customizable fit, the price tag of $25.50 is a bit more appealing knowing you won't need extra diapers for the newborn or potty learning stages :)

Booty Buns is offering one of my readers the chance to win their very own Booty Buns cloth diaper in their choice of color (I will pay the shipping). Please enter using the Rafflecopter form below.

    DISCLAIMER: We were sent the product(s) mentioned in this post for review purposes only. We were not offered monetary compensation for review, and our opinion is 100% our own. 

    Tuesday, May 29, 2012

    DeeTergent Review and Discount Code

    Last year I contacted Dee of DeeTergent after hearing about her products on Diaper Swappers. I waited for a new batch to be made up and she graciously sent me a bag of Monkey Farts detergent. I tried it out over the span of a couple months on cloth diapers, and regular laundry, including Jer's work clothes. It seemed really good at first, but after a few washes I noticed an odd funky smell in our "clean" laundry. I loved the smell of the detergent. It was very fruity, and filled our apartment's laundry room, and even lingered with our laundry for a day or so afterwards, but things just had an unclean smell to them underneath that delicious banana smell. I tinkered with our wash routine for over a month and then Dee offered to send out a new bag. She explained that they did make a few changes to their formula around the time that my original bag was sent out, and wanted to make sure I was using their best product.

    It was about a month later that I received a new bag, in Raspberry scent! Yumm-o! I immediately noticed that the texture of the new bag of DeeTergent looked different. When I scooped it into our first load of laundry, it looked like it dissolved a little quicker too. Again, the delicious scent filled the laundry room, and lingered with our laundry. I loved it! After a couple loads I could really tell this batch was cleaning better. Our clothes smelled better, and Gabe's diapers came out looking cleaner and much more "fresh" smelling. It rinsed clean in one wash too. It's been a very long time since I've seen a lower sudsing, clean rinsing detergent clean so well!

    I should note as well, that after I got a routine down working smoothly with the new bag of Raspberry DeeTergent, we were washing with hard water in our apartment building. A couple weeks later we moved (which is in another blog post) to a townhome, that also has community laundry, but also has a water softener running through the buildings, as well as the washers. So I got to try this DeeTergent out on a couple types of water, and I was amazed at how well it worked under different circumstances.

    DeeTergent is made of saponified coconut oil (coconut oil soap), sodium percarbonate (powdered peroxide), sodium bicarbonate (baking soda), sodium carbonate (washing soda), and love :) All scents used in her DeeTergent's are made from essential oil and natural fragrance oil blends. You can also use DeeTergent as a household cleaner! Mix 1/2 a scoop with 1 liter of water in a spray bottle to use on coutertops, toilets, sinks, showers, etc and use directly from the bag as a cleaning powder. [Info from]

    I've enjoyed trying DeeTergent so much, that I'd love you all to try it out too. Dee is offering all readers of my blog a 20% discount by using the code: CHISFAN, which expires on 6/5/2012. You can use your discount code on DeeTergent's website HERE.

    Don't forget to connect with DeeTergent on Facebook and Twitter. Let her know you found her here!

    DISCLAIMER: We were sent the product(s) mentioned in this post for review purposes only. We were not offered monetary compensation for review, and our opinion is 100% our own. 

    Wednesday, April 18, 2012

    The Baby and His Chi's Are Moving!

    And so are me and Jer! LOL

    There's been a lot going on at our home lately, and it's [past] due time for an update about us!

    Jer started a new job mid-March and it's still going great! We've had some bad mold in our apartment and fluctuating rent, so we've decided against the newly opened 2-bedroom and decided to move all-together. We're moving back into a town-home, in the next town over (big move, right?). Buggie will have his own room, though it will probably just have his toys, and I think his crib will still be in our room. 2 bathrooms instead of our current 1. Detached garage, laundry hook-ups, and (drum-roll please....) a DISHWASHER!!! Yes folks, my biggest selling point lol! I despise washing dishes, almost as much as I hate cooking. The big move will be taking place the weekend of April 27th. Along with spending the last days until the 1st cleaning our apartment so we *hopefully* get all of our security deposit back.

    Now for some sad news that is even more past due... We also re-homed our beloved chihuahua, Jack, last month. With his separation anxiety, tiny 7 pound body, and Bug being the rough'n'tumble boy toddler that he is, we decided with a very heavy heart that it was the best thing for him. We've still having a hard time dealing, but we know he's much happier in his new home. Venus had a rough time at first, but she almost seems like a better dog being the only dog now. I think she thrives on the extra attention.

    With all these things going on, I've still got a few reviews and giveaway's in the mix, so please remember to check back often, and check out the current giveaways on the left sidebar if you haven't already!

    Wednesday, April 11, 2012

    Ecobubs "Cloth Diaper Butler" Review and Giveaway

    If you're a follower of many different cloth diapering clogs as I am, you may have heard of Ecobubs before. Ecobubs is well known for their beautiful wool-blend pockets, which is the reason I had reached out to them. However, instead of reviewing a pocket diaper, I was given the opportunity to try out a brand new product that they just recently released: the Cloth Diaper Butler! Grin Unlimited, the distributor of Ecobubs, has a site specially dedicated to the butler, though it is offered though the Ecobubs website as well.

    Photo borrowed from

    I immediately thought upon opening my package that this would be a very handy product to have along with our diaper sprayer. I simply clip the top of the diaper and let it soak inside-down in the toilet for about 5 or 10 minutes, then spray and hang by the handle in our tub to drain excess water. No more wringing! The really nice thing I've found out, is that the Cloth Diaper Butler also makes it easier to "dunk and swish" if you don't have a sprayer. No more sticking your hands in the toilet water and swirling the dirty diapers around. I've been soaking the diapers with the Butler, swishing with the handle, then simply hanging to drip-dry as well before tossing in the pail. Soaking alone with the help of the butler still removes large portions of waste and keeps your hands clean, and is so much cheaper than a diaper sprayer!

    Photo borrowed from
    I created a slideshow on Flickr to show how easy it is to use, just be forewarned about real live poop! LOL
    (if you click "show" on the full size slideshow, it will show my notes about the Butler)

    I have been so impressed with this handy tool, that I had to be sure I could offer one of them to my readers. Please enter using the Rafflecopter entry form below.

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    DISCLAIMER: We were sent the product(s) mentioned in this post for review purposes only. We were not offered monetary compensation for review, and our opinion is 100% our own.

    Lovable Labels Review and Giveaway

    Whether you have a toddler tossing around a sippy cup or a little one bringing supplies to school or out with them to play, you know how important it is to keep their things labeled! Lovable Labels is here for you with not just a label with a name, but completely customizable labels to fit all your needs from clothing to medical id's and school supplies!

    I was sent the Friendship Sampler to review and was very impressed with the variety of labels included. 

     and 10 Fun Stickies:

    I tried them out for the most part on Bug's sippy cups. One of the star stickers was placed on his ride-on bug car, but I couldn't get a picture, it's out at the campground already! We tried these labels out for a couple months through the normal wear and tear of a toddler and then how they withstood regular cleaning. Obviously if the labels are places on a toy or book they aren't going to be ran through a sink or dishwasher daily, so they will probably see less wear and last longer. 

    The Friendship Pack contained all "Multi-Purpose Labels" which are dishwasher safe, microwave safe, and UV resistant. However, after about 3 weeks of regularly being washed in the sink, you could notice water soaking under the top seal on the label. They still stick nice, with no sign of peeling off or coming loose, but it does make me a little curious as to how often (if at all) they might need to be replaced on food containers or cups.

    Along with multi-purpose labels, Lovable Labels also makes shoe labels, clothing labels, tags (for bags, backpacks, or luggage), household labels (home office, crafts, outdoor bins, spices, pantry, classroom, kosher, toy bins, cord tags and date tags for food), stationary labels, and safety products which include allergy and medical alerts, allergy symbols, medical and vital id wristbands and kid bands (in case your little one might get lost at a park or large public place).

     Since I began my review, the Friendship Sampler Pack has been discontinued. However, Lovable Labels would like to offer you all the chance to win an Ultimate Camp Pack! The Ultimate Camp Pack includes the same styles of labels I was able to review, but also includes clothing and shoe labels and tags!

    Please enter using the Rafflecopter entry form below.

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    Thursday, March 15, 2012

    Kissed By The Moon: Green Line Diapers #Review

    There's been a buzz around the cloth diapering world lately about Green Line Diapers. I kept hearing about the "cute prints" and "soft inserts" and had to know more! I got in touch with Tami from Kissed by the Moon and after a little hassle from good ol' USPS I got a chance to try out a Green Line Diaper cover and soaker for myself.

    Green Line Diaper covers are lovingly made by a husband and wife in Canada. Kissed by the Moon is the only retailer in the United States who sells them. An added perk is that Kissed by the Moon also offers free shipping on all orders, and they have a rewards program!

    Green Line covers are made from Ultrex, not PUL, so they truly are breathable, which means you may feel a cool dampness once the soaker is wet as the diaper "breathes." This is something that I really do love about them, because it means Buggie won't get a heat rash like he does with regular PUL diapers. The one size covers also only come in aplix, but this is the stickiest aplix I have ever seen. Green Line does recommend hand washing the covers to keep both the aplix and the Ultrex in tip-top shape. I recently purchased a Breathing Mobile Washer, so this has been fairly easy!

    My only complaint about the cover is something that is also handy the other half of the time. Green Line covers do not have any elastic. I've been able to get a good, custom fit around the legs with the toggle and cord adjustments. You also don't have to worry about any elastic wearing out. However, Bug finds it completely necessary to poop every - single - time he wears this cover and after the antibiotics from surgery and then having the flu, it has been leaking out... Which is also why I haven't been able to get any pictures of his wearing the cover either. He poops before I can get the camera out. I know he'll grow out of this eventually though! :)

    The soakers I have no complains about. They are so soft! Even if I hand wash and hang to dry, it never felt rough. It's a single layer of 70% bamboo and 30% cotton blend, so it absorbs well with tri-folded then folded down to fit, but it's super easy to clean too!

    Tami is generously offering a $20 gift card to her store! Enter using the Rafflecopter form below. {CLOSED}

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    Sunday, January 29, 2012

    Winter Baby Birthday Blog Bash Giveaway 2: Twin Cities Diaper Co: Thirsties Fab Fitted

    When I found out a few months ago that the root of Buggie's rashes were from PUL, I wanted to love prefolds, but honestly they weren't always feasible. I have a nice simple prefold stash on hand that gets used at home, but  my biggest love right now is for fitteds! I was thrilled to finally be able to try Thirsties Fab Fitteds thanks to Twin City Diaper Co. in Columbus, OH.

    The Thirsties Fab Fitted is very easy to prep. Being made from polyester and cotton blends it only requires 1 wash to be cleaned of any residual oils from the manufacturing process. I ran it through with a regular load of dirty diapers and we tried it out. I was immediately re-aquianted with my lost love for Thirsties! I had been in love with their Duo Wraps  when Buggie was born, but over the months he developed a PUL sensitivity and I had to de-stash ALL our diapers and covers with PUL :( Bug is a tall and somewhat slender baby. Now being 12 months old, he is 23 pounds, but 34 inches long! Wowsa! :) Many people (myself included) like the idea of a one-size system that will more than likely last from birth to potty training. Thirsties makes a two size system. Size one of their duo system fits most babies from 6-18 pounds, and size two of the duo system fits most babies from 18-40 pounds. Some parents might cringe at the thought of still having to buy 2 different sizes, but I personally think Thirsties are worth it. You really do get an incredible fit on almost any baby by having just 2 different sizes (each size complete with a set of rise snaps and available in both snaps and hook and loop).

    My only issue with the Thirsties Fab Fitted is absorbency. With a single microfiber insert, this alone just isn't enough for Bug. We were changing him after about 30-60 minutes. However, with Thirsties amazing "tunnel" system in their fitteds (and also in their new all in ones) they are very easy to stuff and allow you to skip "un-stuffing" and allowing your extra insert to just agitate out in the washer.I added a trifolded newborn prefold and we were good to go for about 2.5 hours!

    All in all, this is a diaper I would buy more of. They are easy, they'd be great for grandma and daddy if I buy some with hook and loop.
    Twin City Diaper Co is also offering one as part of the Winter Baby Birthday Blog Bash! Please enter using the Rafflecopter form below.

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    Sunday, January 15, 2012

    Winter Baby Birthday Blog Bash Giveaway 1: Bummis Beautiful Basics Review and Giveaway

    I contacted Bummis about their prefolds and covers and they generously offered me a BeautifulBASIC set as part of the Winter Baby Birthday Blog Bash!

    The Beautiful Basic set consists of 3 organic cotton prefolds and 1 Super Whisper Wrap. The set is available in 2 sizes, infant (8-15 pounds) and baby (15-30). As well as the option of a "boy," "girl," or "unisex" cover. I chose the baby package with a boy cover, and received the rocket print.

    My first impression of the set was that the cover appeared very durable compared to others I've tried. The material seemed much thicker, while still pliable, and wouldn't be so easy to wear down or get holes. There is a soft polyester layer on top of the PUL so no laminate touches your child's skin. The only down-side to this is that you cannot really wipe the cover clean, but I personally don't mind just tossing it in the wash. Bummis advertises the Super Whisper Wrap as the "workhorse" of diaper covers, being able to withstand even industrial washing. I instantly loved how soft the prefolds were! I felt like they prepped very easily, after 3 washings they absorbed instantly, though I know they will get more absorbent the more we use them. I hang dry our diapers to save money on our apartment laundry, but I was completely amazed at how soft the Bummis prefolds stayed even after hanging to dry. Our other prefolds become stiff and crunchy, while these were just as soft as when they first arrived. Of course by not drying them in a dryer I cannot comment right now at how well they quilt up.

    I was very impressed by the fit of the prefolds and the cover. I usually use GMD (Cloth-eez) or Diaper Rite prefolds which have the average dimensions of 15" wide x 17" long. After prepping the Bummis prefolds they measured at about 13.5" wide x 19" long. That inch and a half made a noticeable difference on my skinny little man. I always struggled getting prefolds tight enough around Bug's waist, but never thought that "maybe our prefolds are too wide." I had to fold down the back a couple inches to get a good fit on the rise, but these fit perfectly around his waist! I also found that they wash up nicely, as to not get stained as easily, but this could also be that the rest of our prefolds are bleached, and these are organic (so also unbleached) so the light brown color could just be masking stains too.

    The cover I found fit nicely, but seemed too big depending how I folded the prefold. If I pinned or snappi-ed the prefold on, I had no gaps at the legs, I saw comfortable fit around the waist, but the crotch seemed a little baggy. If I tri-folded the crotch filled out nicely, and still got a good fit around the legs, but the waist was almost too big! The medium cover included in the Beautiful Basic kit fits 15-30 pounds, but if my 24 pound son were any thinner I don't think it would fit him if I were to tri-fold exclusively. I am very impressed with the hook and loop on the Super Whisper Wrap, being sticky but easy enough for mom to open or pull apart. The laundry tabs I found to work better than on any other hook and loop cover I've tried. It is the soft side of the hook and loop, holding the tabs very nicely through the wash, but also being soft enough to not irritate Bug's skin if it happens to touch.

    Since I don't find a generously sized cover to be a deal breaker (lol) I think the Bummis Beautiful Basic cloth diaper kit to be an incredible value at only $20.95! Bummis has so kindly offered one kit up for grabs to one of my readers! Please enter on the Rafflecopter form below.

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    A new giveaway for the Winter Baby Birthday Blog Bash will be opening next Sunday!

    Tuesday, January 3, 2012

    Maple Hill Dryer Balls Review and Discount Code Giveaway

    About Maple Hill Dryer Balls
    Maple Hill Dryer Balls was started by Rebecca, a stay-at-home-mom of 2 little girls. Rebecca named her shop after her dads farm, Maple Hill Romney's in Lafayette, Indiana. This is also the source of all the wool she uses to make the dryer balls. All her dryer balls are made from 100% wool, also meaning they are 100% naturally colored, no dyes added! They range in size from 9" to 10" in circumference, and will shrink a little after using.

    How Do Wool Dryer Balls Work?
    Wool dryer balls are made to work in the same way as a dryer sheet you would purchase in a store. They will reduce, but not eliminate, static cling. "The dryer balls circulate and separate the clothing and get the warm dry air right down to the core of the laundry load! The more you add to your dryer, the faster the drying time, softer softness and money saved. They speed up the drying time and soften up by gentle friction of the felted wool fibers against your clothing fibers. Not only do they save money by lessening your drying time, you also will not have to purchase conventional store bought, chemical-filled fabric softeners or dryer sheets." It is recommended that you use 4-6 for a full load of laundry, but when I was sent 2 to review, Rebecca assured me that they should make a difference in even a small load of laundry.

    I was a bit skeptical, but these dryer balls really made a difference for us! I've had a problem with our clothing not drying in the cycle time provided on our apartments dryer, and ending up hanging clothes around the apartment to finish drying. I was amazed and quite delighted after using these balls for the past 3 weeks and having almost, if not completely, dry clothes after just one dryer cycle! What a money (and in my case ~ space) saver!

    You can find Maple Hill Dryer Balls on Etsy, Facebook and Twitter. You can also use the follow links to visit her most popular items: Essential Oil Scented Wool Dryer Balls and Scented Wool Dryer Balls.

    Rebecca is offering one of you a 30% off coupon code to Maple Hill Dryer Balls Etsy shop to get you on your way to a more natural and effective dryer experience :) Please enter using the Rafflecopter form below.

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