Friday, October 29, 2010

Pillsbury Review and Giveaway!

I don't know what your household is like, but in the LJD household, everyday is an adventure in frenetic energy whirling and colliding in barely controlled chaos. Between jobs, school, sports, friends, and family, someone is awake and moving around in our house nearly 20 hours a day. Nuts, right?

No matter how busy things get though, some things are sacrosanct. We will all drop everything to watch our kids play a sport, we will read to them (or with them) every day, and we will enjoy as many family mealtimes as possible. One way to make that possible is to eat a lot of Brinner. That's Breakfast for Dinner for anyone not accustomed to the deliciousness!

Recently Pillsbury sent us an awesome coupon for free cinnamon rolls, as well as some other fun swag. I took Keep to the grocery store with me, and we got the ingredients to make this. Instead of macadamia nuts though, we used pecans. We also had thick sliced hickory bacon, sausage links, scrambled eggs with tons of fresh veggies mixed in, fresh orange juice, fruit medley, and icy cold milk. When we were done eating, we dove into the scrapbook kit that Pillsbury sent along with the coupon, and had a lot of fun bonding together. As busy as things can get, sometimes it's nice to have that mom-kid connection with just one of the kids at a time. You gotta make special time for that stuff, ya know?

Anyhow, the folks at Pillsbury (and My BlogSpark) are so awesome that they've offered to give one of my readers the same swag filled package. I was impressed with the quality of the scrapbooking kit they sent, and know you will be too! We are giving the scrapbook we made together to her soccer coach to thank him for a great season, and to show him how valued he is.

One thing that makes Pillsbury Flaky Cinnamon Rolls so special is that Pillsbury provides a huge website filled with great recipes to fancy them up. They're already delicious, but with all the cookbooks, web recipes, and tips you're certain to find a delectable way to enjoy them with those you love! If you followed the link above, you would find yourself on that very website, looking at this picture of the recipe we made (not my pic, but theirs. We ate ours too fast for pics!


Anyhow, on to the giveaway!Want to win some free cinnamon rolls, scrapbooking supplies, and the opportunity to have a sweet Sunday moment with someone you love? Enter below!

Mandatory entry,

Follow this blog via gfc, and tell me what your favorite way to share a sweet moment is!

And, because we all love the chance to score extra entries, you can do any (or all) of the following-

Follow me on twitter. (1 entry)
Tweet about this giveaway, please use @Danni_LJD, and leave me a link to your tweet. (up to 3 times per day, 1 entry for each tweet)
Blog about this giveaway (3 entries)
Refer people to this giveaway, and have them say who sent them when they enter (1 entry for them, and 3 for you!)
Add me to your blogroll (5 entries)

Contest open to US residents 18 years or older only, and ends on November 14th at 11:59pm. Winner will be chosen randomly using random.org and notified via email. Winner then has 48 hours to respond or I will have to choose another winner.

Although I received a package of free product with which to form an opinion for my review, I was not compensated monetarily for this review. All opinions posted here are my own, and this post has not been shaped or edited by anyone but me, LJD. Thanks go to both Pillsbury and MyBlogSpark for the opportunity.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Preggers Maternity Compression Hosiery Review and Giveaway!



When you're on your feet for 8 to 12 hours a day, as I am when I work a double shift at my waitressing gig, your feet get tired! Add in being pregnant (I'm not, swear it!) or postpartum (well, if a year counts as postpartum, I am) and you've got a recipe for swollen calves, ankles, and feet. Varicose veins, edema, complications from restricted bloodflow, and all the other yucky things that can happen when you don't take care of your legs and feet become a serious concern.

Which is why so many of us spend oodles of cash on maternity compression tights when we're expecting. The problem is, so much of what's out there just isn't worth the money we spend, so finding a really great product is definitely worth spreading the word about! I've been around the pregnancy block plenty of times now, and I've learned a lot about what I expect and need from this stuff. So when Preggers sent me 2 pairs of their maternity compression trouser socks, I knew I'd be able to dish the true lowdown on their worthiness.

Let me tell you what I expect a good product to have. First and foremost, I expect to be able to get the dang things on! I can recall one brand I purchased when I was pregnant with Bogey that was so impossible to get on when I was huge and heavy in my 3rd trimester (when you need the help the most!) that I'd have to enlist Mr. LJD for help. So of course, the first thing I noticed about the Preggers I tried on was that, while snug, I didn't have any struggle getting them on.

Which leads to my next discovery about Preggers versus the kinds of support wear I've tried in the past. Preggers stay up. I mean, seriously. I worked a double shift last Friday to cover for a girl who couldn't get a sitter (baby daddy drama there!), and literally wore these from 10am until 11:45pm. That's nearly 14 hours of constant use. Not only were they still up when I got undressed at the end of the night, but they didn't even leave those angry red divots that you might expect from something so firmly gripping your legs.

Even more unexpected, I thought, for grins 'n giggles, why not try them on again the next morning? So, ickiness aside (hey, it was pre-morning shower!) I put them back on. This after 14 hours of wear the day before. And you know what? Those suckers were just as firm and compressing as the day before? Crazy, right? Of course, I immediately took them off and threw them in the washer with all my other clothes. We're talking jeans, hoodies, underwear and socks. No special treatment for these babies!

A few days later, I wore them again. Lo and behold, even after everything they'd be through, the fit was outstanding and I made it through another long shift without any complaints. The best part is, these things really made a difference in the way my feet felt at the end of the night. See, I'm 30 years old, and many of the kids I work with are, well, not. Keeping up with them for hours of time on my feet, after spending all day in heels while I play lawyer games can really put me in a world of hurt at the end of the day. The only thing that would make these trouser socks better, in my opinion, would be if they offered them in pink argyle. I'm a sucker for argyle!

While Preggers won't turn back the hands of time and make me the spry 22 year old that so many of my co-workers get to be, they do make a huge difference in the way 30 years old feels. And for that, I say they are more than worth their cost. If you're interested, you can go here to learn about gradient compression and why it helps so much. 



The only thing better than a product that is worth every penny of what it costs to buy, is winning some for free!You definitely don't need to be pregnant to see a lot of benefit from Preggers, but if you are, then get ready for comfort! And if you've got a soon-to-be mama friend in your life, well, pamper her too!

Preggers is offering one of my readers 2 (not 1, but 2!!) products of their choice That's nearly a $50 dollar value! Since this is my first contest, we'll make this easy and offer several ways to enter.

First, mandatory entry. This entry must be done for any subsequent entries to count-

Follow me via GFC, and leave a comment with a way to contact you telling me what you'd choose if you win.

Extra entry opportunities

Follow me via Twitter (1 entry)
Follow Preggers via Twitter (1 entry)
“Like” Preggers on Facebook (1 entry)
Follow me via Networked blogs (1 entry)
Add me to your blog roll (5 entries)
Blog about this contest (5 entries)
Add this contest to a contest linky, and leave me a link to it (4 entries)
Tweet about this contest, and leave me a post to the link (1 entry, can be done 3 times per day)

This contest will end at 11:59pm on November 5th, 2010. A winner will be selected using Random.org, verified, and notified via email. Winner will have 48 hours to respond to my email before another winner will be selected. Contest open to United States only. Prize will be sent from the sponsor, and prize redemption is the responsibility of sponsor.
Product review & giveaway disclosure: I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255 "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising." 

Sponsored by Tomoson.com

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Counting with Elmo Review


When you've birthed as many babies as this girl, and babysat dozens more before becoming a mommy as I have, you can honestly claim to have watched far too much Elmo. Or, as Bogey would put it, “Way a lot of that show!” But there's a reason why we as parents watch so much Sesame Street. It's good programming. Although we love to revisit our favorite Elmo shows (Elmo in Grouchland anyone?) it's good to see the developments that have happened on Sesame Street in the time since Bogey was into the show. It takes a lot of careful planning and attention to detail for a program to endure for 40 years. And that's exactly how long Sesame Street has been providing early education learning to preschoolers.

Dare is just now getting into Elmo, and his favorite Sesame Street character is Grover. Probably because we read There is a Monster at the End of This Book at least a half dozen times a day. To have an episode featuring the two of them? Bliss. To make his transition from book-Grover to DVD-Grover, last week I received a copy of Preschool is Cool! Counting with Elmo to review.


Seriously, how cute is Professor Grover!?

It's important to me, as a parent, that kid's programming be age appropriate, which Sesame Street definitely is. Beyond that though, the program manages to be on target for kids at various points of cognitive development. Virtually any age child can find something relevant to their academic progress in this video. Whether you've got a toddler who happily bops along to the music and laughs at the funny furry monsters, or a preschooler who counts along and shouts answers to Professor Grover, or even an early school-ager who computes the skip counting that the show touches on, your child is learning.

The TV will never be a more important influence in the life of a child than his or her parents, the rest of the family, and their community. However, there is most certainly room in a child's life for Sesame Street's talent in bringing educational content down to their level. As Warner Home Video puts it, this show, “helps children understand that a purpose of counting is to determine the total number of things in an overall set.”

Now see, there's where Sesame Street shines. I can teach my kid to count by showing repetition and adding/subtracting items from a group. But understanding the purpose for counting that way? Well, I'm a lawyer, not a teacher, so I wouldn't have thought of that. Just another reason why Bogey's right when he says I watch “way a lot of that show.”

You can find a copy of Preschool is Cool! Counting with Elmo at major retailers both online and at brick and mortars. Best part? Like nearly all Sesame Street swag, prices are reasonable (I've seen it from $9.99 to $14.99), and with the holidays already upon us, I think we can all appreciate that!

*No compensation was received in return for this post. Warner Home Video provided me with a copy of the DVD in the hopes that I'd share my honest opinion with you. Thanks to Pitch It To Me for the opportunity. 

Three Thinkingest Thursday Thoughts

First of all, I'm an attorney yeah. Hence the name Lullaby JD. That being said, being a lawyer doesn't make me an expert on anything at all, much less things outside the realm of law. For example, I have no idea when the next solar eclipse will be. I can't read your fortune off your palm, nor can I ascertain why my car is making that weird knocking sound when I put my foot on the gas. So maybe, perhaps, I ought to be permitted a little slack when I'm not as good a server as the employee who you've been managing for 7 years. Ya think?

Party planning for 2nd graders is a lot harder than for 4th graders. Last year's Halloween party for Keep's class was Mad Scientist and the kids are still talking about it. 3 years ago, I planned Keep's 2nd grade Halloween party as a Pirate theme. It was barely a success. 2nd graders are hard. So now I'm planning Bogey's party, with a theme of Spiders, Bats, and worms, all gross things that make you squirm! Any ideas?

Lastly, babies who refuse to nap make me crazy. Especially when that baby is mine.

Fabric Wristband Teether Review


I wanted my first ever official review on this blog to be for a product that means a whole lot to me, something I am so lucky to have stumbled upon that I want others to be fortunate enough to find as well. After thinking about all the new products I've used during Dare's infancy and toddlerhood (so far) that I never knew about, or they didnt' exist yet, when Keep and Bogey were little, I thought of 1 product we use every single day.

Fabric Wristband Teethers. I was browsing Etsy one day when Dare was about 6 months old, and I noticed a brand new shop that sold wristbands with tabs on them (sort of like the blankies and toys with tactile loops, know what I mean?). I immediately convo'ed with the owner of the shop to ask if I could get a custom of special colors for him, and had my order placed the next day. I was her inaugural Etsy customer, how cool is that?

The shop is called Fort and Crib, and is based in Australia! Now, although the owner of the shop lives a bajillion miles away, I still received my first set of custom wristbands in 1 week's time. Super fast response to my questions, she sewed the wristbands quick as lightening, and got them to me in no time. 

Dare was teething SO bad it was insane. He actually had 5 teeth coming in at one time! The pediatrician thought it was bonkers. But honestly, at 6 months old, he quickly figured out that he could chew on the wristband's loops and never drop it. I never had to give Dare any tylenol or orajel during his teething periods, and I credit the amber necklace combined with the wristbands for that.

I've since ordered 2 more wristbands, and he wears them every single day. 

See his blue wristband? It survived quite the caking!

The sewing is impeccable. I'm talking, the kind of quality you expect to find from high end baby boutiques. Moreover, the wristbands are in bright baby-friendly colors, and the owner is easy to work with if you've got a color scheme in mind. Best of all, at $8.50, they are an affordable addition to your own baby's teething solutions, or a great addition to a baby shower present. 

You can see he's wearing another wristband in the Wordless Wednesday picture from yesterday! And here's a picture of Dare at 8 months wearing the 1st version of the wristband. 
You can even see a few of those bitty teeth!
* I have shopped at Fort and Crib several times in the past, and obtained permission from the owner to write a review of her product on this blog. I received no compensation for my review, but she was kind enough to send me an extra wristband to help me evaluate her newest design. This review is my honest opinion, formed even before I had a blog to share it on!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

Here's a snapshot of my blue eyed boys. My oldest has caramel colored peepers, because, as we all know, as the oldest and the female, she's gotta be different!

Also, my apologies for the lack of posts this week. There's been a bit of a crisis in one of my cases, and I've been trying to boost a client out of a very deep hole. I'll be back to my regular schedule (and the reviews I've promised you) soon!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

What Did My Mail(WO)man bring me today?

In addition to a prize I won from another blog contest (some adorable Pediped shoes for Dare), I got a package from Preggers! They make supportive hosiery and socks for the pregnant gals out there. Now, I normally love fancy socks. My kids will testify to the reality that it's very rare to find me without some patterned whimsical socks covering my tootsies.

However, the exception to this is waitressing work. Being on your feet, on the move, for hours and hours per shift is tough stuff. Add in the strains of being pregnant or postpartum and you've got a recipe for varicose veins, sore muscles, and worn out little piggies.

Enter the Preggers trouser socks! I'm so excited to try these over my next few shifts! I'll be back on Monday to tell you how they fared!

Halloween=Hersheys!

In our household, we ALL go trick or treating! This mean's no one's home to man the doorbell. What to do, what to do? For the past few years, we've made a practice of putting out a big bowl of Hershey's classic chocolate bars (you know the kind, the rectangle of 4 perfect Hershey's pieces) out on a chair. The porch is decorated, and the kids will draw up a "please take 1" sign.

You'd think the candy would be long gone by the time the 5th kid got to our house, right? But nope! Seems everyone knows the karmic value of sharing Hersheys, because we always return home to find at least a few left in the bowl!

This year, we're thinking of handing out these(The Reese's Pumpkins!)--

What do you think? What do you hand out for Trick or Treaters?Why not pick up a few bags of Herhseys, and check out the site www.CelebrateWithHersheys.com/Halloween while you're at it!

This post is written as a part of a contest for a Hershey’s Halloween prize pack as a member of the Mom Bloggers Club. Are you in the cool kids club? If not, join today!

Three Thinkingest Thursday Thoughts

I haven't worn a Halloween costume since I was 12 years old. Until last night. For my part time gig, all of us servers had to dress in costume for a party held at the restaurant. I racked my brain for days and days trying to come up with an interesting and clever costume. I finally, a half an hour before my shift, designed a spiderweb on a black shirt, and threw on a nametag that read, "Hello, my name is.... CHARLOTTE." Get it?

Why is it you always discover what you need to buy is 50% cheaper across town at the store you always shop at, on the day you're sitting in the specialty store getting emergency work done on your computer and paying premium prices? Whoops!

My kids are out of school tomorrow and Monday. The teachers at their school are so pampered, the district really works hard to give them enough inservice days with empty classrooms so they have time for planning, preparing, continuing education, and rejuvenation. Although all the days off can be a pain for working parents to plan around, I really credit this care with a major reason our teachers are so phenomenal. Take care of our teachers, because when they're happy, our kids are happy!

The Pioneer Woman Rules My Universe.

Srsly. I was on my way here this morning to do my Three Thinkingest Thursday Thoughts, and thought to myself, why not stop by Ree's and see what she's cooking up today? Afterall, my ENTIRE Thanksgiving menu last year came from her recipes (book and site), and so did my ENTIRE Easter day brunch and dinner. That should clue you in, a teeny bit, to how obsessed I am with her delicious foods!

So, in any event, there I was, preparing to head here with a pit stop by her place to check and see if I needed to create a new bookmarked recipe when I saw this-- (please, go here now and then come back to me!)--

Ree's Creamy Grits with Chilie's

I'd love to post a picture of the sumptuousness, but I don't wanna be a thief, so you'll have to go visit her to see. Now, you may be telling yourself not to bother, b/c you don't like grits. But I'm promising you, if the only grits you've ever had are your grandma's breakfast staple grits, or waffle house side dish grits, ignore the little voice in your head and pop over there. Cheese grits are a whole 'nother universe from those plain old buttered grits of childhood.

I'm SO making this tonight! Now, I'm off to the grocery store. Back with my Thinkingest Thursdays soon, promise!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Dare's a Future Sweeper!

video 

Okay, so ya gotta excuse the lame-o cell phone video taping. The battery in my primary camera died, and I forgot to bring extra AA's for the FlipVideo camera in the diaper bag. Whoops! Anyhow, at 14 months, his favorite thing to do is KICK! Already a daddy's boy. 

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Top 5 Annoying Things This Lawyer Deals With.

This post is not directed at anyone in particular, nor is it a commentary regarding any of my current or previous clients. It is meant for entertainment purposes only, and does not constitute legal advice in any form or fashion. 

5, Save the "I'm innocent, I swear on my Mama!" for, well, your mama. She's the only one who is influenced at all by your assurances. The prosecutor already thinks you're guilty of every crime possible to commit, and I'm gonna work my tail-end off for you regardless. You get all my zeal, my passion, my all nighters, and my investigative support for the low, low price of...wait....I'm your appointed attorney. You're not paying me anything.

4, When I don't answer the phone after your thirteen call in one hour, it's not because I'm partying it up with the "exorbitant retainer" you paid. It's because I'm in court, representing another client who also paid an "exorbitant retainer." Leave a message, wait your turn. I promise I'll call you back.

3, If your mom, your dad, your sister, or your boss calls me, please understand that I won't (can't) "just let them know what's up, cuz you're busy." I'm spending a lot of time preparing a case to support your claim. The least you can do is respect my refusal to breach the ethics which bind me.

2, As a newly minted attorney, please believe me when I promise you that I'm not rich, don't have swiss bank accounts filled with money, and yes, this car really is mine and not one I borrowed from a friend so I can 'look poor.' My fees are reasonable and commensurate with the going rate in this area for this type of legal work. I made tremendous sacrifices to obtain the documentation allowing me to practice, I deserve every penny of the fees I work so hard for. Plus, my kids need dinner and this whole lawyering gig is what pays the bills.

And lastly,

1, No, I'm not going to spend every minute of this wonderful party listening to your "hypothetical situation" and then provide solutions (magical unicorn solutions at that!) for free. I'm not allowed to give out legal advice to non-clients, and unless my checking account is playing hide and seek games with me, you haven't given me a check to deposit. You want my advice, set up a free consultation and we'll go from there. Otherwise, stop facebooking me for the answer to "a little legal question."

Target Has Samples Now? How'd I Miss This?!?!

Did you know you can now request samples from target!? I'm a Target nut. To the extent that each of my 3 children can claim an outing to "Our Target" as their first post-birth trip out of the house. In fact, with Keep and Dare, we stopped at Target on the way home from the hospital!

Now, before you start thinking I'm some sort of bad mommy who exposes her kids to all kinds of germs, they were safe in their baby carseats, covered with blankets. But the lights at Target have always held a special appeal for infants in our family, so we go there. A lot.

It's totally about exposing the kids to the calming lights and noises of the store, not me shopping. Not at all, not one bit! Sigh. Okay, it's also about me shopping.

Anyhow, here's a link to request whatever samples they're featuring at the moment. Right now, it's Glad Odor Shield trashbags and a new version of Tide with a stain lifter. Free stuff, from my favorite mass-market retailer? I'm SO there!

Free Stuffs at Target.

Three Thinkingest Thursday Thoughts

I don't care who you are, or how old you are, or what you're injecting into your body, or what your personal opinion of waitresses is; you don't leave your used needles on the table for me to clean up. It's completely classless, and at $2 an hour, I don't make nearly enough to deal with biohazard waste.


So many baby products are built around flash and fancy. When you find a simple solution that really works, it makes you want to shout all about it. I've got a product in mind, one I discovered when Dare was about 6 months old that we use everyday still. The kind of creativity to come up with stuff like this is so far beyond me. I wish I could invent cool stuff like this, but sadly, it's not my milieu.

I think one of my husband's favorite parts of Fall is that the need to mow the lawn slows down. I'm not allowed to mow the lawn. There was....an incident. Don't worry, no one lost any limbs. But our yard was somewhat traumatized for a while after my lone attempt.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Be on the lookout!

For some pretty darn cool product reviews coming up soon, and maybe even a contest soon! I've got some neat things tucked up this pinstriped sleeve of mine!

You can check for my giveaways (and a bajillion more) at Giveaway Scout!