Archives for June 2010

Constructive Playthings Clay Center: $50 Gift Card Giveaway

hypothesis The Clay Center with Play Doh from Constructive Playthings will be a great way for my daughters to develop their creative abilities while learning to play and work together.

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One Clay Center with Play Doh (a Constructive Playthings EXCLUSIVE!), two very excited little girls and a babysitter.  About Constructive Playthings:

“US Toy/Constructive Playthings is a family owned business serving loyal customers since 1953! We strive to inspire learning, creativity, and fun by offering a unique mix of high quality products with unparalleled play value for children. Our success can be attributed to strict adherence of the values and principles set forth by our company founders, like the commitment to forgo selling violent toys. We hope to continue providing both unique product offerings and top flight customer service for many years to come!

results In case you missed my excited announcement, did you know that I was selected as a Constructive Playthings Mom!  Each month, I will get to review a toy and let you know exactly what my daughters and I think of it AND I get to give something away, too!  Pretty cool, huh?

playdoh For my very first review, we were given the task of selecting a Constructive Playthings Exclusive toy.  After checking out the options, I decided on the Clay Center with Play Doh, which can be purchased for $28.99 (or if you use my Constructive Mom Exclusive discount by clicking on the logo in my right sidebar or in this post, you will receive 15% off, this toy would only be $24.65)!  This toy is designed for children ages 3 and over and includes 74 pieces.  A little about the toy from the website:

Designing with Play-Doh® is fun and easy with this caseload of sturdy plastic tools: extruders, stampers, rollers, molds, cookie cutters, 4 figures and more. Set includes four 5 oz. tubs of Play-Doh® in a variety of colors.

One night last week, my husband and I had a much needed date night and asked my Mom to babysit the kids while we were away.  I thought this toy would be a great way to occupy the girls and involve my Mom in a fun activity.  While Play Doh is always a hit in my house, accessories are a must.  Without them, I can make……..well…..a snake.  With my Scientific brain, coming up with creative clay projects is quite difficult.  The 74 accessories allowed my girls to play with this set for HOURS without getting bored.

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As a Mom, I love that they used their imaginations while working together to play and create fun creatures, food products, houses and silly faces.  And what made it even better is that my Mom enjoyed it just as much as the girls did!  Isn’t Play Doh a timeless toy?  I would highly recommend this developmental toy from Constructive Playthings!

hypothesis My family had the great pleasure of testing out the Clay Center with Play Doh from Constructive Playthings, a great store with a huge selection of educational toys.  My daughters loved creating fun sculptures with the various accessories (their favorite was the rolling pin with stencils!) and played creatively for over an hour.  The low price (did I mention you can get a 15% discount by clicking on the Constructive Playthings logo on my right sidebar?) makes this a great gift for birthday parties or the holidays!

GIVEAWAY

Ready to get creative with Constructive Playthings?

I have one $50 gift card for one lucky reader right here on Experimental Mommy!

How to enter:

1. Visit Constructive Playthings and take a look around. Come back and tell me a toy you think your child would really enjoy. The toy mentioned in the review does not count.

Additional entries:

1. Blog about this giveaway and link to The Not-So-Blog and Constructive Playthings (10 extra entries).

2. Follow me (@BridgetteLA) and @ConstructiveMom on Twitter and Tweet this giveaway. Every time you tweet you get an additional entry! Unlimited! (You must have over 50 Twitter followers to qualify for unlimited entries!)

3. Subscribe to my blog.

4. Become a Fan of The Not-So-Blog and Constructive Playthings on Facebook.

5. Place my blog banner on your sidebar.

6. Subscribe to my Feed.

Contest ends at 11:59pm CST on July 16th. Prizes not claimed in 72 hours will be forfeited. Open to U.S. and Canadian Residents only (Canadian website to launch soon!).

This product review is the opinion of the Experimental Mommy. Others may have a different experience. Constructive Playthings supplied me with samples for review, but all opinions are 100% mine.

Kung Zhu: Review and Giveaway

hypothesis The new Kung Zhu products by Cepia will be tons of fun and provide a twist on my girls’ favorite Christmas toy.

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Thanks to Mom Select, we received a generous box of the most popular Kung Zhu toys inlcuding the Battle Arena, battle hamsters, battle armor, buzzsaw tank, and many other accessories.  About Kung Zhu:

kungzhu2 “Introducing the hottest new line from Cepia evolving from of Zhu Zhu Pets…Kung Zhu Pets! These warrior hamsters are far from being the cute and cuddly Zhu Zhu Pets that everyone fell in love with. But make no mistake, these ultra cool, tough pets will be a sure competition to the original Zhu Zhu Pets! With eight original characters split into two battling groups called Special Forces and Ninja Warriors, Kung Zhu Pet owners will have the thrill of training each character to transform fighting, battling warriors. While these Kung Zhu hamsters may start of as “cute” and “mild-mannered” once they are sent into their main training grounds, smart chip technology will actually allow you to hear a distinct personality transformation of fighting ninja and warriors.

results Last Christmas, I lost my mind and decided to stand in long lines in the wee hours of the morning to buy a $10 hamster that my daughter had her heart set on.  And I was not happy about it.  At all.  But, it turns out that it was the best $10 that “Santa” spent this year because both of my daughters still play with their beloved Zhu Zhu Pets almost daily.  Our Zhu Zhu family has grown to include some accessories and a few more “pets” but nothing like what showed up on my doorstep last week.

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The cute little Zhu Zhu Pet hamsters have turned into lean, mean, fighting machines…..Kung Zhu!  Two hamster groups (the Special Forces and the Ninja Warriors) can don armor and fight it out in training grounds and ultimately in the battle arena!  Undoubtedly an attempt at attracting more boys to their customer base, I was worried that my daughters would not be a fan (after all, NONE of them are pink.)

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We joined a friend and her two sons for a little Zhu Zhu party and all four kids went to town playing with the Kung Zhu sets!  My daughters jumped right in and battled with the boys and had an absolute blast.  The track was easy to set up and the battle armor snaps right on.  Once the armor is on, the hamster transforms from cuddly to courageous and his personality becomes one of a warrior!  My daughter’s favorite part?  The buzzsaw tank!!

hypothesis This June, Cepia launched a new line of Zhu Zhu Pet, called the Kung Zhu!  These hamsters transform from lovable pets to sparring warriors when dressed in armor and placed in the battle arena.  While the set appears to be geared towards boys, my daughters had no problem jumping into the middle of the playset and becoming part of the competition.  You can find the Kung Zhu line for sale at Toys R Us now!

GIVEAWAY

Ready to challenge your Kung Zhu Pet to a dual?  Experimental Mommy has a great prize pack including the Battle Arena, Rhino Tank, Battle Hamster Sarge, Battle Armor “Rivet/Thunder” and Battle Armor “Thorn/Strike” for one lucky reader!

How to enter:

1. Visit Kung Zhu and tell me which hamster you like the best!

Additional entries:

1. Blog about this giveaway and link to The Not-So-Blog and Kung Zhu (10 extra entries).

2. Follow me (@BridgetteLA) on Twitter and Tweet this giveaway. Every time you tweet you get an additional entry! Unlimited! (You must have over 50 Twitter followers to qualify for unlimited entries!)

3. Subscribe to my blog.

4. Become a Fan of The Not-So-Blog on Facebook.

5. Place my blog banner on your sidebar.

6. Subscribe to my Feed.

Contest ends at 11:59pm CST on July 16th. Prizes not claimed in 72 hours will be forfeited. Open to U.S. Residents only.

This product review is the opinion of the Experimental Mommy. Others may have a different experience. Mom Select supplied me with samples for review, but all opinions are 100% mine.

Invisalign: Teen Choice Awards Sweepstakes

As a child, I had horrible teeth.  Really really bad. I finally got braces in 5th grade and had to wear the metal eyesores until my Junior Year of High School.  Back then (more years than I am willing to admit), alternatives to traditional metal braces did not exist.  Now, Invisalign has revolutionized the appearance of braces and allowed patients to straighten their teeth in a modern way!  From Invisalign Teen:

invisalign You no longer have to straighten your teeth the old-fashioned way, with metal braces. The Invisalign Teen™ system lets you do it the modern, hygienic way. Your new smile is created with the most innovative technology – a series of clear aligners that are custom-fit to your teeth.  The first thing you should know is that an average treatment takes about a year.1 Plus your treatment can begin even if you don’t have all of your permanent teeth. Invisalign Teen was designed to meet your needs.

I would have loved this option when I was in high school!  And to top it off, Invisalign Teen recently launched a sweepstakes where the winner will receive a VIP trip for 4 to the Teen Choice Awards 2010! The grand prize includes:

  • Trip for 4 to attend Teen Choice 2010, including air, hotel, and transportation
  • 4 Post-Show VIP Party Tickets
  • 2 Flip Cameras

You can also win runner up prizes which include an iPad, laptop, surfboard, and iPods!  Make sure you visit Invisalign Teen to enter now through July 12th!

A gift card was given to me for compensation for my time in posting this announcement.  However, all opinions remain 100% mine.

Wordless Wednesday

Forever Friends at the Circus

Forever Friends at the Circus

Talk Back to the TV part 4: Watch The View!

Jesse Tyler Ferguson (ABC’s Modern Family) came to hang out with the ladies on The View today.  The ladies and Jesse wasted no time getting into Hot Topics today.  Cleansing diets were the first thing discussed, with Elisabeth being in the middle of a juice cleanse.  This was kind of a yucky conversation, I will say!  I have never done a cleanse but I know people who have and swear by them.  Apparently Gwyneth Paltrow and Jessica Simpson are no strangers to the dieting/cleansing world either, and now Gwyneth is afflicted with a condition that is a precursor to osteoporosis.  This has some wondering if her constant use of cleansing diets have contributed.  Elisabeth commented that too much of anything is never a good thing!  I guess that means a Sonic Diet Coke Cleanse is probably not something I need to be doing?

At any rate, I am starting to notice that Joy Behar has a habit of not taking anything Elisabeth Hasselbeck says or does seriously.  They are polar opposites.  While I do like both of them individually, it’s almost like Joy is the authority figure and looks at Elisabeth like she is some young dimwit.  In my opinion, most of the stuff that comes out of Elisabeth’s mouth is shut down or “pooh-poohed” by Joy.  It’s becoming kind of grating.  While I admit that Elisabeth has sparked lots of controversy over a variety of foot-in-mouth comments, I still think she’s a valuable part of the show and Joy needs to lighten up.

See Joy?  Happy and Fancy-free?  Not like she wants to claw Elisabeth's eyes out?  This is what I like.  Happy happy Joy Joy.

See Joy? Happy and Fancy-free? Not like she wants to claw Elisabeth's eyes out? This is what I like. Happy happy Joy Joy.

Did y’all hear about Kayla Martell?  She was just crowned Miss Delaware!  This might not seem unusual but Kayla has Alopecia, a condition which causes her to lose her hair.  What a beautiful testimony to not letting a physical characteristic stop you from achieving a goal.  This is one of the reasons I like The View….without Hot Topics, I would have never known about Kayla.

Uber-talented, Oscar-winning actress Helen Mirren stopped by with her husband Taylor Hackford to discuss their new movie, Love Ranch. Based on a true story, Love Ranch is about a couple who opened the first legal brothel in Nevada.  Helen and Taylor discussed their  love story, which is long-standing by today’s Hollywood standards.  The movie seems to be very thought-provoking and interesting.  Another reason to see it?  Helen Mirren’s love interest in the film, Sergio Peris-Mencheta.  **swoon**

Sergio.  Needs no explanation.

Sergio. Needs no explanation.

Last on The View today was Tonya Craft, a teacher who was recently acquitted  of charges that she sexually molested her daughter and two other girls.  As a teacher myself, I can tell you this is high on the list of  being every school professional’s nightmare.  Despite passing two polygraph tests, Tonya had to stand trial and lost custody of her children in the process.  She is now working to regain her life back.  Tonya’s story is a great reminder for all parents to have appropriate discussions with their children regarding good touch vs. bad touch.  It’s something you can never assume your child’s school or anyone else will handle  for you.  We  have always had open and honest conversations with our kids about what is appropriate and we never, ever let our guard down.  Some might think we are over protective, but my school of thought is better to be safe than sorry.

Tomorrow on The View:  General Hospital cutie James Franco!  Check it out!

Disclosure: As a “View Ambassador,” I was given financial compensation by ABC Daytime to write my opinions of the recent View episodes.  However, all opinions remain 100% my own.

Win tickets to the Essence Festival from Tide! CLOSED

The winner of this giveaway, selected by random.org, was #4:  Maria!

Congrats!  You will receive an email shortly!

Earlier this month, I had the pleasure of visiting the P&G Headquarters in Cincinnati, Ohio to meet with the great people at Tide.  Even before I began working with Tide, I was always a loyal customer, but after seeing first hand the wonderful work they have done with Loads of Hope, I am forever a Tide girl.  While taking classes at Fabric Care University, I had the opportunity to see first hand a new product in development, Tide with Acti-Lift.  Think you have a stain that’s beyond repair?  Think again!  You have GOT to see this product in action.

essence This weekend, July 2-4, Tide will be on hand at Essence Festival in New Orleans, LA.  In the Expo Hall, located in the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, you will be able to witness first hand the power of Acti-Lift and have fun, too!  From the press release:

“To celebrate its current technology, Tide will create a booth that provides an interactive experience for attendees of the Essence Music Festival.  Booth visitors will be among the first to witness a live demo that reveals the technology behind Tide with Acti-Lift amidst live music, style advice, celebrity appearances, giveaways and more. Tide Loads of Hope ambassadors will be on-site to help raise awareness of the ongoing need for support in New Orleans and educate consumers about the program and ways in which people can get involved.

Booth activities open to the general public will include:

–       Meet celebrities such as Idris Elba, Chrisette Michele, local DJs and the industry’s leading fashion experts

–       Participate in live Know Your Style trivia challenges with the chance to win special concert tickets

–       Strut your stuff for a Cat Walk Challenge, to make a personal style statement and have your picture taken

–       Learn about Tide Loads of Hope – created in 2005 to help families affected by disaster

–       Receive samples of  Tide with Acti-Lift product”

Come on out and have fun!  You could win some great prizes and hang with the celebrities!

GIVEAWAY

janet Want more fun?  While the Expo Hall admission is free, Experimental Mommy has TWO tickets to the musical performances at Essence Festival in New Orleans at the Superdome for all three days!!  You can see musical acts including Janet Jackson, Mary J. Blige, Monica, LL Cool J, Alicia Keys, Jill Scott and many more!!!

Because the concert starts THIS FRIDAY, this will be a lightening fast giveaway!  Enter now and enter often to win this incredible prize!!

GIVEAWAY

Is your mouth watering yet? Ice Box Bakery has generously donated one cookie dough prize pack to one lucky reader!

How to enter:

1. Visit Essence Music Festival and tell me which artist you are most looking forward to seeing!

Additional entries:

1. Blog about this giveaway and link to The Not-So-Blog and Essence Music (10 extra entries).

2. Follow me (@BridgetteLA) and @EssenceMusic on Twitter and Tweet this giveaway. Every time you tweet you get an additional entry! Unlimited! (You must have over 50 Twitter followers to qualify for unlimited entries!)

3. Subscribe to my blog.

4. Become a Fan of The Not-So-Blog and Essence Music Festival on Facebook.

5. Place my blog banner on your sidebar.

6. Subscribe to my Feed.

Contest ends at 9:00pm CST on June 30th. Prizes not claimed in 24 hours will be forfeited. Open to U.S. Residents only.

This product review is the opinion of the Experimental Mommy. Others may have a different experience. Tide supplied me with two tickets as well, but all opinions are 100% mine.

Ice Box Bakery: Review and Giveaway

hypothesis Ice Box Bakery will allow me to be the Mom that makes the house smell amazing from the scent of fresh baked cookies from the oven but in half the time!

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Fresh baked Oatmeal Chocolate Chip, Double Dutch Chocolate and Chocolate Chip cookies from Ice Box Bakery and two girls who are salivating like Pavlov’s dogs waiting for the oven timer to sound!  About Ice Box Bakery:

iceboxlogo “Ice Box Bakery produces premium, all-natural, ready-to-bake cookie dough made in small, individual batches. Using only the finest wholesome ingredients, including real creamery butter (never hydrogenated shortening or oils!), pure cane sugar, and pure vanilla, Ice Box Bakery makes baking delicious homemade cookies quick, convenient, and fun to do, for even the busiest families. Quick-wrapped to ensure “fresh from the mixing bowl” flavor and sold in the refrigerated section, our dough is pre-rolled and can be easily sliced by even the smallest hands.

results As a child, my Mom was a stay at home Mom.  I can remember coming home from school to the wonderfully delicious smell of fresh baked chocolate chip cookies and devouring them in an instant.  It was so comforting and the smell still makes me think of home.  Now, in my own home, both my husband and I work full time.  There is little time to bake homemade cookies, so my girls rarely get this treat.  So, I was so excited to have the opportunity to try the All Natural cookies from Ice Box Bakery!

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Available in seven different varieties, we received Oatmeal Chocolate Chip, Chocolate Chip and Double Dutch Chocolate.  Each pre-made roll of dough makes about 13 cookies.  On separate occasions, my daughters and I made all of the varieties (you can never have enough cookies, right?!?).  The dough was very easy to slice and my girls enjoyed helping by arranging them on a cookie sheet.  In only 8 minutes, our cookies were ready and boy did they smell good!  My favorite was the Oatmeal Chocolate Chip which was packed with walnuts, but my girls loved the good old-fashioned Chocolate Chip.

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In my opinion, you can definitely taste the butter in these cookies.  I was amazed that the quality of these cookies came from a roll of slice and bake cookies!  I could definitely take these cookies to a bake sale and pass them off as homemade!  These cookies are made by a working Mom for a working Mom!  Pure PERFECTION!

hypothesis The cookies from Ice Box Bakery definitely passed the taste test with my daughters.  As a Mom, I was pleased that I could serve wholesome cookies from natural ingredients in a fraction of the time.  The cookie dough is made with no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives and uses real creamery butter!  While we had the opportunity to try three varieties, I am looking forward to chomping down on more such as ginger spice and classic sugar cookie which can be found in your local Whole Foods Market!  You can also feel good about purchasing products by Ice Box Bakery because they support There with Care, a charitable organization helping families with critically ill children.

GIVEAWAY

Is your mouth watering yet? Ice Box Bakery has generously donated one cookie dough prize pack to one lucky reader!

How to enter:

1. Visit Ice Box Bakery and tell me which variety you want to try first!

Additional entries:

1. Blog about this giveaway and link to The Not-So-Blog and Ice Box Bakery (10 extra entries).

2. Follow me (@BridgetteLA) and @IceBoxBakery on Twitter and Tweet this giveaway. Every time you tweet you get an additional entry! Unlimited! (You must have over 50 Twitter followers to qualify for unlimited entries!)

3. Subscribe to my blog.

4. Become a Fan of The Not-So-Blog and Ice Box Bakery on Facebook.

5. Place my blog banner on your sidebar.

6. Subscribe to my Feed.

Contest ends at 11:59pm CST on July 14th. Prizes not claimed in 72 hours will be forfeited. Open to U.S. Residents only.

This product review is the opinion of the Experimental Mommy. Others may have a different experience. Ice Box Bakery supplied me with samples for review, but all opinions are 100% mine.

Talk Back to the TV: Watch The View! Whoopi’s back!

chrisbrown Whoopi Goldberg returned to The View today from “Hotlanta” where she has been shooting a movie.  Glad to have her back!  Whoopi wasted no time getting the gang started on today’s Hot Topics.  First to the fire?  Chris Brown, who gave a gut-wrenching performance this weekend at the BET Awards.  Chris sang a tribute to Michael Jackson and broke down while singing.   Elisabeth made the good point that maybe Chris broke down more due to the lyrics  (“The Man in the Mirror) rather than missing Michael.  Of course, she is referencing Chris Brown’s assault charge last year with his girlfriend Rhianna.   Sherri’s point that “actions speak louder than words” is so true.  I like Chris Brown’s music, but am tempted not to financially contribute to his sales if he can’t turn around his reputation as a physical abuser.  Do y’all feel the same way? Does reputation sway your decision to purchase from an artist?

Next up: Michael Douglas, who is no stranger to controversy, is battling it out with ex-wife over the spinoff/sequel to his Wall Street movie.  Yikes! Seems in the divorce settlement she is entitled to half of any of his future earnings for “spinoffs” he makes based on movies he made while they were married.  According to Joy, she is already got “something like $45 Million in the original divorce.”  HOLY SMOKES!

On the same note as “Celebrity Perks” it seems there were some people squawking this weekend because Jason Bateman cut in line to get his new iPhone 4.  In his defense, he started out standing in line but then was escorted in by the people at Apple.  I must say that I got used to the Celebrity treatment very quickly when Bridgette and a few other fantastic bloggers hit the Disney Lottery back in February.  But every carriage must turn into a pumpkin eventually, right?  Sigh.  I’m glad Jason got his phone.

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More Hot Topics today included gross Airline food, more sex abuse scandal in the church, and Sarah Palin.  Like her or not, she is very disrespected by the media and it’s a shame.  Can’t we all just get along? This discussion was a good reminder that if you have a microphone on, watch. every. word.

Next discussion: Jake and Vienna.  Ugh.  If you don’t know who they are, consider yourself lucky.  I am a huge “The Bachelor” fan but I was never a fan of Jake…or Vienna.  I am really tired of them re-cycling contestants, although if they had recycled Reid from Jillian’s season you would have gotten NO complaints from me!  As vomit-worthy as Jake and Vienna are,  I was glad for this brief discussion though because I was able to get a really good look at Elisabeth’s cute dress (I am a sucker for eyelet).  In my opinion, Elisabeth is adorable.  Hard to believe she got her start on Survivor eating bugs!  So if you are DYING to know the “dramatic” truth regarding Jake and Vienna’s breakup, you will get all the answers you need on the July 5th episode of “The Bachelor.

nikkiblonsky A guest on The View today that I really wanted to see was Nikki Blonsky.  I have seen a few print ads for her new show on ABC Family called “Huge” and I was wondering what it was all about.  One of my favorite movies ever is Hairspray and I have adored Nikki ever since.   “Huge” takes place at a weight-loss camp.  Nikki plays Will, who is an offbeat teen who cannot stand the thought of being at camp.  The clip they showed really sparked my interest and I immediately added Huge to the Tivo line up.   It will be interesting to see how Huge tackles the body-image issues so prevalent in society along with being conscious to promote good health.   Do y’all plan on watching?

Last up was self-proclaimed Osama Bin Laden hunter Gary Brooks Faulkner.  Wow. Gary is a construction worker who has traveled to the Middle East to try and find Bin Laden.  I am not sure if this guy is the bravest man I ever saw…..or the craziest.   I hope for his family’s sake he stays safe!

On tomorrow’s show: Helen Mirren and Taylor Hackford.  Tune in with me!   The View always has something exciting going on!

Disclosure: As a “View Ambassador,” I was given financial compensation by ABC Daytime to write my opinions of the recent View episodes.  However, all opinions remain 100% my own.

“Shine On Now” with American Girl: Giveaway Included!

In August of 2005, my life was ultimately changed with the arrival of Hurricane Katrina.  As a New Orleans native, it was almost unbearable as we watched helplessly from our hotel room in north Louisiana as our City was submerged in water.  The months that followed were undoubtedly the hardest of my life.  But, we managed to pick up the pieces, move on, and create an even better life largely because of the generosity of friends, family and even complete strangers.

My family and I were overwhelmed by the outpouring of concern, love and kindness we received.  My oldest daughter was only 6 months old at the time, and thankfully does not remember a thing.  However, my husband and I feel like it is very important to “pay it forward” and teach our children how to be generous, loving and kind to those in need.

While generosity is very important, as the Mom of two daughters, I want to instill strength, courage and confidence in my girls so that they may achieve their dreams and make a difference in this World.  I share these values with the creators of American Girl.  From the website:

At American Girl, we celebrate girls and all that they can be. That’s why we develop products and experiences that help girls grow up in a wholesome way, while encouraging them to enjoy girlhood through fun and enchanting play.

My oldest daughter was introduced to American Girl last year when “Santa” brought her a set of “Bitty Twins” and she has indeed been enchanted ever since.  So, when I learned of American Girl’s new charitable initiative, Shine On Now, I was honored to be selected as a Parent Partner.  From the press release:

To foster a spirit of goodwill and help make the world a brighter place, American Girl is introducing Shine On Now™ — a new charitable initiative that harnesses the collective power of girls to help others in need. Through Shine On Now, American Girl is calling on girls across the country to help the company give $1 million in clothes, books, dolls, and money to the following four organizations: Kids in Distressed Situations, Save the Children U.S.A., National Association of Children’s Hospitals and Related Institutions, and National Wildlife Federation.

shineon Beginning July 13, 2010, girls can visit shineonnow.com to contribute a free ‘star’ to the effort. The goal is to collect one million stars by the end of the program on July 31, 2010. In addition, for every star a girl contributes (she can donate up to 100 each day!), her name will automatically be entered in a daily drawing to win a new My American Girl™ doll.

Lily (with my help, of course) has already signed up as an American Girl Ambassador and downloaded the kit.  She has decided that she will work to donate her stars to K.I.D.S. which helps children in need after natural disasters.  I feel like this is a great way for Lily to learn about people less fortunate than she and what she can do to help.

In addition, American Girl is launching Innerstar University which is a virtual world where girls can learn to be their best in a safe and fun virtual world.  Access to Innerstar University is free with each 18-inch My American Girl doll.

My American Girl Doll 2 As mentioned above, for every star a girl contributes, her name will be entered in a daily drawing to win a new My American Girl doll.  This is a new, expanded and more contemporary line of dolls!  There will be even more customization options so girls can make their dolls look exactly like them!

Make sure you don’t miss a thing!  Follow Shine on Now on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube!

GIVEAWAY

American Girl wants to honor the girls that are making a difference in their families, schools and communities.  Right here at Experimental Mommy, you can nominate a deserving girl to win her very own My American Girl doll which she will have the opportunity to fully customize!  One winner will be picked from Experimental Mommy!

How to enter:

1.  Nominate a deserving girl who has made a difference in her family, school, Church or community.  Please describe her selflessness and acts of kindness and generosity.  Please do not disclose her name in your comments.

Additional entries:

1.  Follow @agshineonnow and @BridgetteLA on Twitter and tweet this giveaway using #shineonnow. One tweet per day is allowed!

2. Fan Not So Blog and Shine on Now on Facebook and let them know you saw the giveaway on Experimental Mommy!

Contest ends at 11:59pm CST on July 31st. Prizes not claimed in 72 hours will be forfeited. Open to U.S. Residents only.

American Girl sent me free product samples as a part of my partnership in the Shine On Now™ program. The opinions and content posted here are my own other than excerpts taken from a press release where noted.

Slix Men’s Underwear: Review and Giveaway

hypothesis The boxer briefs from Slix will allow my husband to be more comfortable as he goes from working (he is a teacher), to the gym, and home for dinner with the family.

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One Slix Closer boxer brief in black and my husband who was tired of saggy undies.  About Slix:

slix “Slix exists to enhance the lives of professional men. We provide superior quality garments that deliver tangible benefits through a convenient, seamless customer experience. Hall wanted underwear that would not only be functionally superior to cotton, but also versatile enough to wear to the office, under jeans or shorts, working out, or under his board shorts at the beach.

There the idea was born: Slix would do for professional men what garment manufacturers had done for athletes a decade before – provide them with revolutionary products that fundamentally enhanced their comfort and performance.

Slix launched in November 2009 as an online, direct-to-consumer business with the mission to enhance the lives of professional men through superior products and exceptional service.

results My husband goes through underwear like crazy.  I feel like we are buying new pairs constantly.  He prefers to wear boxer briefs, but finds that when he wears pants of jeans, the briefs wear out from friction.  They often become saggy and ultimately uncomfortable to wear.  So, when he had the opportunity to try a a pair of boxer briefs from Slix, he was more than excited!

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These undies are made of Cationic Polyester and Elastane.  The material allows them to breathe, wick, and dry quickly.  It eliminates the risk of chaffing and provides movement so the product does not have to be adjusted during wear.  According to my hubby, “My Slix fits well and is very comfortable.  I have not experienced any problems and am surprised that in the New Orleans heat, I did not feel hot.  I would definitely buy this product and would recommend them to every man.”  Unfortunately, personal product pictures are for my eyes only! LOL!

hypothesis My husband is now a big fan of his Slix Close boxer briefs!  One pair will cost you $24, but they will definitely last longer than his traditional cotton pairs.  Slix also has other great products such as undershirts that don’t come untucked, the Slix Influencer!

Use code notsoblog to receive 15% off your order!

GIVEAWAY

One winner will receive a Slix Closer Boxer Brief!

How to enter:

1. Visit Slix and tell me another product you would love to try!

Additional entries:

1. Blog about this giveaway and link to The Not-So-Blog and Slix (10 extra entries).

2. Follow me (@BridgetteLA) and @Slix on Twitter and Tweet this giveaway. Every time you tweet you get an additional entry! Unlimited! (You must have over 50 Twitter followers to qualify for unlimited entries!)

3. Subscribe to my blog.

4. Become a Fan of The Not-So-Blog and Slix on Facebook.

5. Place my blog banner on your sidebar.

6. Subscribe to my Feed.

Contest ends at 11:59pm CST on July 12th. Prizes not claimed in 72 hours will be forfeited. Open to U.S. Residents only.

This product review is the opinion of the Experimental Mommy. Others may have a different experience. Slix supplied me with a unit for review, but all opinions are 100% mine.