Saving Money on Diapers

Times are tough for a lot of us right now, but there are lots of things that we still have to spend money on. If you have a baby, chances are that diapers are one of those things. If you haven’t already, check out Diapers.com to see if you could be saving money. The site has a great selection, including ecofriendly diapering options, and they also have a Best Price Guarantee – so if you find a better deal online, Diapers.com will match it.  And orders over $49 get free shipping in the United States (no coupon code required – see site for details.)

29 Gifts

Cami Walker was in a dark place when one of her spiritual teachers suggested that she give away 29 things in 29 days to get outside her own mind each day. Giving of any kind, she counseled, begins the process of change and helps us to remember our connectedness.

So Cami started giving things away – one thing each day.

Now, her idea has grown into a website and a ‘global giving movement’ with more than 3,600 members in 38 countries.

The premise is this: Give one thing away each day for 29 days. Then, on the 29gifts.org website, you can share your stories about how this renewed focus on giving has affected your life.

To get started, sign up at http://29gifts.org and start giving. Remember, your 29 gifts don’t have to be expensive or monumental – a smile, a kind word, and the gift of your time count just as much as tangible gifts. Then, to complete the challenge, submit your story or artwork (from a song to a film to a drawing) on the 29 Gifts site to tell about how your experience made you focus more on giving.

Wish You Had More Time to Read? 4 Ideas

Do you love to read but don’t feel like you have enough time? Here are four of my favorite ways to get more reading in.

1. Download an audiobook. This is my favorite way to catch up on those books that I’ve been meaning to read. It seems like, even during my busiest days, there are times when I find myself wishing I could be doing something more productive. Maybe I’m waiting for the Girl Scout meeting to finish, or I’m organizing my junk drawer, or I’m taking the dog for a walk. When I have a good audiobook, time seems to fly right by. Another bonus: I find that if I have something really juicy and suspenseful on my iPod, I will go for a longer run than I would otherwise (so my leg muscles and my Labrador both benefit.)

You can actually get free audiobooks in a number of different ways. First, check your local library for books on CD or books on tape. Some libraries even have a way that you can download audiobooks via their website. (Typically, you can listen only for a specific period of time, because you are borrowing the audio and not purchasing it.)

You can also get select titles (both human-read and computer-read) free through Project Gutenberg as well as through LibriVox.org, where volunteers read chapters from public domain titles. The New York Times has a free collection of author interviews and readings here that you might enjoy.

You can pay to download audiobooks individually through websites such as iTunes, eMediaExpress and audible. If you find yourself paying for more than one audiobook each month, you will probably save money by paying for a monthly subscription to an audio book website, such as audible.com and SimplyAudioBooks.com. My favorite (and the membership site that I belong to) is  audible.com. You’ll pay a monthly fee (pricing depends on how many books you plan to download per month), but you save big over purchasing each title ala carte.

If you are going on a road trip, remember that Cracker Barrel restaurants have an audio book program, Basically, you purchase an audio book on CD at one Cracker Barrel and then return the book at the next Cracker Barrel. They refund the purchase price, minus $3.49 for each week you’ve had it. (Details are subject to change. Visit Cracker Barrel for all the current details.)

kindle.jpg2. Get a Kindle. The Kindle wireless reading device is a beautiful thing. It’s lighter than a paperback, thin as a magazine, and it holds some 1500 books. The new version, Kindle 2.0, will even read to you. The price has come down to $259, and it’s fabulous – so if you read a lot, it might well be worth it. It ships for free, if that helps. :)

3. Subscribe to PhilosophersNotes. If you love self-development titles but don’t have a lot of time, give Philosopher’s Notes a try. Creator Brian Johnson artfully distills his favorite and most life-changing books to a 6 page PDF and a 20 minute mp3 recording. At the time of this writing, you can get 52 notes (includes both the PDFs and mp3s) for $20, but Johnson is adding new notes all the time, so these details are subject to change. I find that these are great to listen to again and again.

4. Stash books everywhere. I have a book in my glovebox, and another by my bedside. I have a book near my stove and another near the couch. Some books are good enough that I take them everywhere. Others, I keep where I will enjoy them most. For example, I can’t read Harry Potter right before bed or I end up dreaming about basilisks, so I keep that where I can sneak in a few pages during the day – and I keep something a little more  dreamy and inspirational by my bedside.

I hope you find lots of extra time to read the world’s wonderful books.

Yoga for Kids sequence from Yoga Today

We love Yoga Today. This site delivers a different show, 7 days a week, keeping your yoga workouts fresh. You can treat yourself each morning to a free one-hour yoga class in a gorgeous setting (Jackson Hole, Wyoming) from world-class Yoga instructors.

Here’s a new blog video that is fun and family friendly. It’s a “Yoga for Kids” sequence:
http://www.yogatoday.com/blog/2009/03/16/yoga-for-kids/

Four Lovely New Books for Young Children

pajama-mamas

Here are four lovely new books for young children, with direct links to their descriptions at amazon.com.
Keep in mind that amazon.com offers Free Super Saver Shipping on orders of $25 or more:

pajama-mamas

Pajama Mamas

Pajama Mamas
by Kate Spohn
With big flaps perfect for little fingers, this interactive board book portrays a series of sweet, hip mamas gently coaxing their children to bed. The art is lovely and the words are lyrical.

Mommy Calls Me Monkeypants

Mommy Calls Me Monkeypants

Mommy Calls Me Monkeypants
by J.D. Lester
Illustrated by Hiroe Nakata
We are always coming up with new endearing nicknames for our kids. This board book celebrates the sweetness of different nicknames with fun, rhyming prose that couples perfectly with Hiroe Nakata’s colorful illustrations. A great read-aloud book for little ones.

babytoes

Baby Nose to Baby Toes

Baby Nose to Baby Toes
by Vicky Ceelen
Babies and toddlers will be surprised and delighted with these side-by-side photographs of babies and animals, which highlight their similarities. Simple rhyming text with oversized pages, perfect for little hands.

dancerecital

My Dance Recital


My Dance Recital
by Maryann Cocca-Leffler
This is a perfect gift to commemorate a first dance recital. Pop-ups, pull-tabs, and lift-the-flaps make this interactive book a keeper. Kids will relive the fun and excitement of the special dance day again and again.

6 Festive St Patrick’s Day Drink Recipes

Here are some easy and festive green drink ideas (three with alcohol and three for the kids) to help you celebrate in style.

For the Adults:

Green Beer
Green beer is easy to make. Find a light-colored beer and add a few drops of green food coloring. Of course, the darker green you want the more food coloring you’ll need to add. (Of course, you can always add yellow and blue.) The food coloring won’t change the taste of the beer.

Green Apple Martini
Start the drink by adding ice to a martini shaker. Add 1.5 ounces of vodka and 1 ounce of green apple schnapps. Shake and pour it into a martini glass.

Mint Cooler
Add ice in a shaker followed by 1 ounce of crème de menthe, 1.5 ounces of gin and ginger ale to taste. Shake it well and then pour into the cocktail glass.

Non-Alcoholic Drinks:

Green Lemonade
Start with a pitcher of lemonade and add a drop or two of blue food coloring and stir to check the color concentration. Add more food coloring to make the lemonade darker.

Coconut Pineapple Delight
Combine 1/2 ounce of coconut syrup, 3 ounces of pineapple juice, 3 balm leaves, ice and green food coloring. Crush the ice and add it to a glass or brandy snifter. Crumple up the balm leaves and add them to the ice. Add the coconut syrup followed by the pineapple juice and green food coloring. Stir it and enjoy.

Green Grape Iceberg
This is a little more time-consuming to make but the results are outstanding. You’ll need 10 frozen green grapes, 4 ounces of sparkling water, 4 ounces of white grape juice, green food coloring, a blender and ice. Pour the grape juice into the blender and then add 8 frozen grapes and 2 drops of green food coloring. Blend this for 15 seconds and then pour it into a highball glass. Add sparkling water to taste and the remaining frozen grapes as garnish.

 

A Teeny Weeny iPod Shuffle


Apple Store
I bought myself a hot pink iPod shuffle just after Christmas because each of my kids had one wrapped under the tree, and I fell in love with them. They clip on so tight and are so tiny that I can take them running or Nordic skiing or whatever I’m doing on a particular day – and it doesn’t bounce around.

Apple has just unveiled a brand new version of the iPod Shuffle. It’s half the size of the previous generation, which is kind of amazing, seeing as how the Shuffle I have is teeny. The 4 GB of storage on the new iPod holds up to 1,000 songs and multiple playlists and, with the press of a button, the iPod “VoiceOver” tells you what song is playing and who’s performing it. It can even tell you the names of your playlists. Sweet!

Click here to get it for just $79 with free shipping and free engraving.

Garmin Forerunner 305: Product Review

Garmin Forerunner 305

Garmin Forerunner 305Product Review:
Garmin 305 Forerunner with heart rate monitor and high sensitivity GPS
Where to buy: www.amazon.com
Reviewer: AHC Mom
[Editor's note: At the time of this writing, the Garmin Forerunner 305 was reduced in price to $179.99 - a savings of 40%. Click here for today's pricing.]

Consider your Garmin Forerunner 305 your running buddy or your personal trainer who will lead you to a better workout and success.

The Forerunner 305 is a sports watch manufactured by Garmin. It is very comfortable to wear, even if it is bigger than a usual sports watch. It looks cool and is very easy to use with functional buttons to push.

Included in the price is:

* Forerunner 305
* Garmin Training Center CD-ROM
* Heart rate monitor
* Docking cradle
* Expander strap
* A/C charger
* USB cable
* Owner’s manual
* Quick start guide

The high-sensitivity GPS tracks and measures distance, heart rate, multiple laps, calories burned, speed, time, altitude as well as pace. If you are a road runner training for your big race, or if you are a triathlete aiming for a big goal, this is your must-have piece of equipment.

If you don’t like running on your own, you have the option of a virtual running partner program. This allows you to compete against a virtual runner that will keep you going.

The Forerunner 305 comes with a docking station and software to upload runs to your PC. You as a user will be able to view maps of your distances run, you will also be able to see your progression during the runs in altitude and pace. At the same time this watch also records your heart rate, which is downloadable as well.

For more information of this product and its many uses, go to the www.amazon.com website.

Yoga for Weightloss DVD: Product Review

Yoga for Weight Loss DVD

Product Review:
Yoga for Weightloss DVD – Beginner & Beyond (2007)
with Maggie Rhoades
Where to buy: www.amazon.com
Reviewer: ACH Mom

Yoga for Weight Loss DVD

Yoga for Weight Loss DVD

We all know that Yoga is good for our health and our inner balance.  Not only can it leave you refreshed, and de-stressed, it will also tone your body and contribute to a slimmer and fitter you.

Yoga exercise will give you a complete body workout and stretch your muscles while at the same time burning off calories. You will feel challenged but also feel great after each exercise regime.

The Yoga for Weightloss DVD – Beginner & Beyond is an outstanding practice DVD for all levels of yoga students, from beginner to more advanced student. You can choose from 12 different set routines that range from between 15 to 60 minutes depending on ability and time restraints. It has a “Getting Started Routine” for the complete beginner, a “As you Progress Routine” and a weights & bands bonus section.

The instructor, Maggie Rhoades, gives very clear instructions and explains in detail the different poses throughout the routines and additional useful advice, for example when to breathe. The routines will help you practice a nice selection of different poses and you will find yourself advancing to more difficult poses in no time.

Enjoy the health benefits of yoga in the comfort of your home, watch your body getting more and more toned, flexible, slimmer, invigorated and fit.

Yoga DVD for Kids: Product Review

Product Review
Gaiam Kids – Yogakids DVDs (set of 2)
Where to buy: www.gaiam.com
Review by: AHC Mom

We are more and more aware of the need for children of all ages to exercise to stay healthy in body and mind. Yoga is one type of exercise your kids will enjoy.

The Yogakids DVD (set of 2) is designed for young children aged 3 to 6 and is presented in a way that will be enjoyed by both, your children and yourself. You will love learning the fun poses with them. The exercises on the DVD will also instil in your children a good feeling about themselves, about their body, the joy of exercising and it will strengthen their mind.

The Gaiam Yogakids DVDs come in two DVDs, Yogakids 1 and Yogakids 2. The first DVD runs 40 minutes and will get your youngsters reenergized as they take their inspiration from Mother Nature.

They will use their imagination and roar like lions, stand like a flamingo, stretch like a cat and many more poses. The yoga instructor will expertly guide you and your child through yoga sets that are easily achievable for 3 to 6 year-olds.

Yogakids2 is 45 minutes long and uses the alphabet to teach basic yoga poses. Poses like the Jabberwocky Jellyfish, the volcano and more will be fun to do, and also inspire and delight your children. This DVD will challenge your children’s coordination, it will also increase their self-confidence and sense of achievement.

By investing in these DVDs you will get your kids moving and keep them happy and healthy in body and mind.

[Editor's Note: Gaiam.com frequently offers coupon codes. Click here to check for current Gaiam coupons before you order. The link will open in a new window.]

YogaKids1 at Gaiam.com


YogaKids2 at Gaiam.com


YogaKids 3 from Silly to Calm at Gaiam.com