Archive for the ‘Random Ramblings’ Category

Thursday, January 15, 2015 @ 02:01 PM
posted by mrscaz

I nursed all three of my boys for the first 6 months then incorporated the formula to satisfy the need for constant feeding while growing constantly out of their britches. Because I chose to breastfeed, I was able to save money, apply convenience because it is always accessible, comforting for the baby and very healthy for the mother mentally and physically. I believe the economic benefit of breastfeeding would be for the social services and assistance programs such as WIC (Women Infants & Children Program) and the EBT Food Stamp Program by decreasing the amount spent on formula and allow those funds to be spent on food for the mom to keep up a healthy milk supply for an ever-growing infant when ready to feed.

Now it has been a few years since I have had to buy formula but the last that I checked the cost is now upwards of $18-$40 a can depending on the digestive system and allergies of the little ones and that probably lasts about a week or so… so multiply the purchase of one at the common price of $28 and 48 weeks for the first year which will total $1,344. That’s a lot of money for some. Breastfeeding will allow that money to return to bills, healthy food for family, car payment?
In addition to raising their immunity and increase of mothers serotonin levels, you may be eliminating some expensive doctor, hospital and medication costs given the fact breast milk contains antibodies that formula just can’t provide.
 b1f bf bfs bfsss
off

Native American Festival

Monday, April 14, 2014 @ 09:04 AM
posted by mrscaz

native american festival

It’s always nice to take a brief break from the kids belts office to unwind and decompress. What a great time for that! It was absolutely beautiful here all weekend.

I really love to get out and see what’s going on locally. You know, give the kids a sense of the community and all. Sunday we had a chance to spend the day at a local Native American Festival. The cool thing was that it was at a park that is just down the road from us, so we were able to bike there.

bike

 

The kids had so much fun. The event was really put together well. So many people attended and were opened up to a beautiful culture. We saw traditional Native American dancing and of course Bug and Daddy had to join in on the fun.

dance

Super Dude was more interested in the weapons training portion. He really got into that and now he’s begging for a blow gun. I feel, however, that it may be considered bad parenting if I give in and get him one. The tomahawk, though…. that one I may indulge in. (I seriously hope you know I am kidding about that one!)

festival3

festival2

I am also happy to report that I was totally able to stick to my newly adopted gluten free diet which is a bonus. Turkey legs are gluten free, right??

turkeyleg

Now, I am not one to paint a rose colored picture of our life, because we are by no means perfect, but occasionally, we manage to have a perfect day. Today was one of those days. I cherish these days. These are the days that make all the not so perfect ones worth while. You know those days, we all have them. When the kids won’t get ready in time for school, when the house is a mess, when you are on your 7th “stop that now!” and nothing is working, that’s when I reflect on days like today.

What does your perfect day consist of? I’d love to hear about them!

Blessings,

Common Cents Mama - Kids Belts - Toddler Belts inventor

 

 

 

 

off

Gluten Free Tips

Friday, April 11, 2014 @ 09:04 AM
posted by mrscaz

GF

So, that’s what’s new with me… no more gluten. Super Dude, Bug and I are all going gluten-free. Fun times, I tell, ya. I mean, really, it’s all the rage, everyone is doing it, I’m about to follow them off a bridge too…

But, seriously, we are trying the whole gluten-free thing for a while for health reasons. I feel like it can’t hurt to try and if it doesn’t work, we haven’t lost anything, except maybe money. Yes, definitely money, gluten free can be expensive and quite frankly, a tad overwhelming, too, I mean not everything can be as easy as our kids belts! There are sooooooo many choices out there for gluten free products, but just because it’s gluten free doesn’t mean it’s good for you. Technically, potato chips are gluten free, but that doesn’t mean they are a health food. With all of the options out there, how do you know what to get or how to even start being gluten free?

Gluten-Free-Just-Another-Fad-DietGood question, I’m glad you asked because I’m going to give you a few tips for going gluten free!

  1. Get reacquainted with your kitchen. Eating out is a huge risk towards breaking your gluten free diet. There is hidden gluten in sauces and breading and so many other foods that it makes it very difficult to stay on track.
  2. All meals don’t have to be gourmet. You know what’s gluten free? Chicken, broccoli with cheese (even Velveeta) and homemade beans & rice (add black beans to cooked brown rice add some chopped tomatoes, onions and garlic). Meals don’t get much easier than that. Keep it simple so that you don’t overwhelm yourself. If I try to aim for the moon with every meal I cook, I know I’ll fail because that’s too much work and all the prep work… ain’t nobody got time for that!
  3. Stock up on good fats. Beef up your diet with heart healthy fats that will fill you up, avocados, nuts,
  4. Make the produce store your best friend. Enjoy all of the fresh seasonal fruits and veggies you can stomach! Throw in some starches like potatoes  (white, gold, red, blue) and sweet potatoes they are also gluten free.
  5. Keep snacks simple and handy. Hummus and veggies are great, applesauce, almonds, homemade popcorn (not the microwaved stuff), cheese slices…
  6. Finally, plan. That’s right, plan your meals, including snacks and make a list. Do a little research and study up on the brands that are gluten free. Take it slow and easy…

If you are making the switch, I’d love to hear what worked for you. Share your tips and tricks!

Blessings,

Common Cents Mama - Kids Belts - Toddler Belts inventor

off

I’m hooked

Friday, April 4, 2014 @ 09:04 AM
posted by mrscaz

doterraHow’s this for a random Friday topic, essential oils. Yes, I have passions other than my glorious kids belts, shocking, right? I’ve gotten hooked on the essential oils. After extensive research, it’s my opinion that doTerra is the best brand for quality and consistency.

The other day I got a sun burn at the local BalloonFest. Now, normally I would suffer through it or try product after product to help it, but with doTerra, I just made my own burn relief oil with 10 drops lavender, 5 drops peppermint, and filled the rest of the 10ml bottle with fractionated coconut oil. Sweet relief! And the next night when I broke out in HIVES because I decided to put Shea butter on my sunburn to give it extra moisture, I was itching like crazy. After I mixed up a little Basil, lavender, peppermint, and melaleuca, my chest now looks MUCH BETTER.

OilSingles
I love my oils and I love knowing that I am doing something really great for my family. I have totally made over our medicine cabinet and gotten rid of the man made chemical and all of their crazy side effects!
modern essentials
With all of that being said, the hubby was skeptical at first but then the most AMAZING thing happened! The other night he was having a mild asthma attack and we couldn’t find his inhaler. I did the only thing I know how; I consulted my Modern Essentials book. I found out that the best way to treat asthma was with Eucalyptus, Frankincense, and Peppermint. I put 5 drops of Eucalyptus, 5 drops Frankincense, and 2 drops of peppermint in the diffuser (this is a LOT of oil at one time people! Way more than you should use, but I was stressed out about his wheezing and I needed to help him quick.) Within a minute, his chest opened up and he could breathe easier. The next morning he was shocked to say that he had the BEST. SLEEP. EVER. And, he came into my office that afternoon, took a deep breath, and asked, “Did you hear that?” Of course I heard nothing. He said, “That’s me NOT wheezing!”
So, like I said, I’m hooked and I can’t see going back now!
Blessings and good health,
Common Cents Mama - Kids Belts - Toddler Belts inventor

 

Giggles

Friday, March 14, 2014 @ 09:03 AM
posted by mrscaz

kids-on-grass-2

Some days I get so wrapped up in life and in what’s going on in the world of kids belts, that I totally forget to sit back and enjoy life (not that I don’t enjoy kids belts). I know I’m not the only one who does that, at least, gets wrapped up in life, not the world of kids belts, that would just be weird if you were all wrapped up in kids belts, too.

Anyway, the point is I get caught up in rushing through the day to day and hurrying the kids along that I tend to forget to sit back and just watch them being kids.

Last night as was putting the kids to bed and I let them tell me jokes and stories, I tickled them and we cuddled. It was pretty great and it made me think of a poem that Jen wrote a few months ago on her blog, titled I Am Made. I hope you enoy it!

i am made for smiles
made for laughs
made for giggles
i am made for hugs
made for snuggles
made for wiggles
i am made for dirt
made for rocks
made for balls
i am made for scrapes
made for bruises
made for falls
i am made for running
made for jumping
made for biking
i am made for digging
made for building
made for hiking
i am made for soaring
made for flying
made for reaching
i am made for loving
made for caring
made for teaching
I am made for helping
made for doing
made for giving
I am made for serving
made for aiding
made for living
Now, go do something child-like with your little one. I promise you won’t regret it!
Blessings,
Common Cents Mama - Kids Belts - Toddler Belts inventor
off

Amazon, you won

Wednesday, February 19, 2014 @ 01:02 PM
posted by mrscaz

I feel like this is a pretty accurate tag line for Amazon. Our kids belts are sold on Amazon, and while for the most part, that’s great, there is a definitely a down side.

“But, Jen (yes, Jen, I’ve taken over the blog today), what could be bad about a huge marketplace selling your product?” Well, the problem is that when someone sets up a storefront, they can call that storefront anything they want. It doesn’t necessarily have to be their legal business name. I know, that shouldn’t matter, right? But it does and I’ll tell you why.

We have always had a policy in place that controls how our retailers price our products. We offer a premium product and for the value of the brand, need it priced accordingly. Well, the vast majority of our stores adhere to our policy, but for about the last 6 to 9 months there has been a small handful of Amazon e-tailers who refuse to comply. On a normal basis, we would just stop selling our product to that e-tailer, but because they are anonymous on Amazon, it’s virtually impossible to find out who they are in “real” life.

Having those few e-tailer being able to sell our product cheaper, is not fair to our faithful e-tailers so we have had to drop that policy. In short, that may mean you will be able to pick up Dapper Snappers a bit cheaper, but that is also affecting that businesses bottom line. Businesses who have a smaller bottom line have to make adjustments in other areas. It’s not fair, but maybe that’s just business.

So, congratulations Amazon, you won.

Blessings,

Jen writing for

Common Cents Mama - Kids Belts - Toddler Belts inventor

off

Gobble, Gobble – Let’s give thanks

Monday, November 25, 2013 @ 11:11 PM
posted by mrscaz

Turkey day is just around the corner and while I am salivating just thinking about the amazing food I will inevitably be over indulging in, I have noticed a trend. Now, I noticed this trend last year, but didn’t think much about it other than, “awe, that’s nice”, but this year, it’s everywhere. What’s this trend? It’s the “I’m thankful for…” posts on Facebook. (yes, I scroll through Facebook while working at the kids belts office, it’s marketing, right?).

I love the idea behind this trend and I am glad that so many people are thankful (even though they should be thankful everyday anyway). I mean if you take the time to reflect on the positives, like what you are thankful for, then you begin to create positive energy. That, my friend, is a wonderful thing.

But you know what would be more wonderful? What if we changed it up a little? What if we took a moment to be what someone else is thankful for? That sounds a little wonky, what I mean is, what if we do something that makes someone else think “Man, I am so thankful for…” Imagine the impact. Now, I’m not suggesting that you should do things to try to have someone tag you in their Facebook status (“I’m so thankful that so and so did this for me!”) and then you pat yourself on the back, I suggesting maybe a few random acts of kindness.

Here are a few suggestions…

  • When you are in the drive-thru grabbing your morning coffee, pay for the person behind you
  • Check out the lay away section of your local box store and pay off someone’s lay away
  • Offer to buy lunch for that guy or gal you always see standing on the corner (don’t offer them a ride, you can always bring the food to them, remember to be safe!)
  • Volunteer to serve food (or donate food) at your local food bank
  • Hold the door open for that woman pushing the stroller with one hand and holding the hand of a toddler in the other
  • Smile at someone
  • Offer to help someone get something off the shelf at the store if they can’t reach
  • Leave an encouraging note on someone’s windshield in the parking lot
  • Order water when you go out to eat and leave the server what you would have spent on beverages (above and beyond your normal tip)
  • Leave an encouraging note on a friends door

And so on… There’s your challenge, make someone else thankful. Can you do it? Please share your experience!

Now I leave you with Kid President’s “20 Things We Should Say More Often”…

Blessings,

Common Cents Mama - Kids Belts - Toddler Belts inventor

off

September? Fall?

Monday, September 16, 2013 @ 09:09 PM
posted by mrscaz

Did you get the memo? It’s September and I honestly can’t believe it. Have I gotten so wrapped up in kids belts that I have completely lost half a year? Well, while I’d like to say “Yes, that’s it, I was completely engrossed in Dapper Snappers and lost half a year!” But the truth is I’ve been engrossed with life.

I know, we are all engrossed in life, it happens to all of us. Life, that is.

Don’t get me wrong, I have been super busy at the office, what with new patterns (I’ll blog about that more tomorrow), new packaging (I’m sure I’ll share soon), new employees and getting ready to go to the ABC Kids expo in October and all, but life outside the office has been hectic, too.

What’s been going on, you ask? Well, other than the normal rat race that is having kids in any kind of extracurricular activities, this happened…

Which lead to this…

Which sucked up several weeks of my life because I, of course, am left-handed. (and you know us lefties, we’re never right!)

Did I also mention that I have taken up the hobby of doing nails (you know, manicures and such, I’m licensed, you know?)? Well, that’s pretty impossible to do when you are rockin’ a cast. And yes, I rocked it and even bedazzled it…

Now, I’m not going to go into details of “how” and “why” but I will say that safety cones are not all that safe. Not even when they are in a large group seemingly screaming “STAY AWAY”…. Nope, not safe at all.

Blessings,

Common Cents Mama - Kids Belts - Toddler Belts inventor

off

Ponies & Policies

Friday, July 19, 2013 @ 12:07 PM
posted by mrscaz

Bug’s new obsession is My little Pony. She loves it and loves (to my dismay) watching it over and over, which means I watch it over and over and over… Well, while watching the episode “The Super Speedy Cider Squeezy 6000″, I thought “there are some lessons to be learned here for our kids belts!” Click here for a breakdown of the episode.

Basically, there is a business in town selling cider. Everyone loves the cider, but they run out before everyone is served. A new business rolls up in town selling new cider and touting on how its better and they can make it quicker. After a competition, the new business wins because it makes more cider faster, however when the towns residents taste it, they realize it is poor quality and not worth the money.

That made me think of a problem we are currently having. There are unauthorized sellers selling cheap knock off’s of Dapper Snappers. We know that our genuine, made in the USA Dapper Snappers are the highest possible quality and we stand by that, as do our authorized retailers. However, as a result of the unauthorized retailers, we have had to put a new policy in place. We can not accept returns or exchanges of faulty products from unauthorized retailers because we can’t guarantee their authenticity.

The current list of retailers that we will NOT accept a return from is:

  • wesaveyou$
  • Alpine Baby Hub
  • 6Saves
  • Overstock.com

We will keep you keep you updated with any others as we come across them. There is a list of authorized retailers on our website (attention authorized retailers, if you don’t see your name listed, please email jen@toddlertechusa.com ASAP). We will also be posting a list of unauthorized retailers on our website.

Thank you all for all of your wonderful support!!! We love you all!

Blessings,

Common Cents Mama - Kids Belts - Toddler Belts inventor

off

If I Could…

Friday, June 21, 2013 @ 08:06 AM
posted by mrscaz

There are times when I’m all caught up with work at the kids belts office, when I don’t have two children vying for my time, when the hubby isn’t asking where I want to go for dinner, when I can actually just sit in beautiful silence and think. Sometimes there is nothing better than to just sit, staring off into space pondering the deep and meaningful questions of the universe… What’s the meaning of life? If a tree falls in the forest and there’s no one to hear it, does it make a sound? Which came first the chicken or the egg? If I could go anywhere in the world, where would I go and why?

Ohhh…. I like that last one. Let me take that topic and run with it.

If I could go anywhere in the world on an all expense paid pass, where would I go and why?

I’d go to the country shaped like a boot! That’s right, Italy.

And here’s why…

  1. It’s beautiful, or at least that’s what I have heard. I haven’t actually been there, if I had then I probably would have chosen a different place. Why would I want to go back to the same place and not choose somewhere else new and exciting? Anyway, think of all of the history there. The Colosseum, Leaning Tower of Pisa, Pompeii (which would be equally as creepy, have you seen pictures of this place?), the Florence Cathedral and so many more…
  2. I have a strange fascination with Italians. No, I’m not talking about the Italians found in the show Jersey Shore, I’m talking about real Italians, like the ones seen in Under the Tuscan Sun. I am sure that movie is an accurate depiction of life in Italy and look at those people, they seem so jolly and fun to be around.
  3. The food, oh the glorious food…. I don’t really think I need to explain this one, but I will. Umm… Pasta, pizza, pastries, fresh cheeses and cured meats, espressos, breads, soups, sauces, oh my, I think I have gained 10lbs just thinking about it.
  4. Because I used to work at Olive Garden (which is super authentic), so it’s sort of my civic duty to go to Italy now. I mean that practically makes me Italian, right?? (I’m kidding, I know that doesn’t make me Italian!)

Now, here’s the tricky question, if you could go anywhere (all expenses paid), where would you go and why?

Blessings,

Common Cents Mama - Kids Belts - Toddler Belts inventor

off