The SmartKlean Laundry Ball Review and Giveaway

Just what is a laundry ball, you ask?  It’s a device designed to replace laundry soap that lasts for an entire year.  (If you wash approximately 18 pounds of laundry per day.)  The SmartKlean Laundry Ball is a perforated plastic sphere filled with ceramic pellets.  Don’t ask me about the specific chemistry involved, but the product claims that the pellets eliminate mold and bacteria, elevate PH levels to simulate soap, and break down water clusters to reduce rust in washing machines.  Honestly, the other features of these pellets are a bit too science-saturated for me to grasp.

Skipping detergent altogether and throwing a ball into a washing machine filled with stinky socks and sour milk smells seemed a bit crazy, but I have to say that it works.  You can hear the ball bouncing around inside which must help agitate the laundry a bit more.  We even used it with our diapers, which are mostly wet these days since Jovi uses the toilet for bowel movements, and they came out smelling great!  It doesn’t do a whole lot for stain removal, but if you pretreat your clothing, it comes out just fine.  (The company also recommends adding white vinegar and sea salt to very soiled clothing to boost the cleaning power.)
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Don’t Forget to Enter Our Breast Pump Giveaway!

Just a friendly reminder that you have until this Friday, May 6th to enter our Hygeia EnJoye Professional-Grade Breastpump Giveaway! There are multiple ways to win and the prize is pretty fantastic so make sure you get your entries in by Friday.  Great luck!

15 Minutes Outside: A Book Review and Giveaway

Books sit on my nightstand for weeks before they are ever cracked open, but I was aching to read 15 Minutes Outside: 365 Ways to Get Outside and Connect With Your Kids.

Why did this little gem get preferential treatment? The title alone tells me what I wish we were doing on a daily basis around here. It’s fine to skip the paper towels and embrace cloth diapers, but what do all those things mean to my kids if they don’t have an intimate relationship with the world outside their door?

The rain has been  relentless lately and we don’t seem to take the time to slip on our boots and brave the weather. We could save a stranded earthworm or find a budding pussy willow or perhaps slosh through a dozen puddles.
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Mamadoc Product Review and Giveaway

What if your OB/Gyn was a mother of three who actually invented things to make women’s lives easier as they journeyed through the rough landscape of early motherhood?  The bad news is that most of you won’t be able to become patients of Dr. Somi Javiadshe’s busy enough as it is!  The great news is that  she, along with her business partner, Kim Howell, have founded a website and product line to support new and expectant mothers.  Mamadoc was developed by Howell and Javiad to offer practical, eco-friendly pregnancy products to women that can make pregnancy and new motherhood a bit more comfortable.

Some of Mamadocs clever inventions include Nox, a compression bra to help nursing mothers with engorgement when weaning, Preghose to help pregnant moms prevent swollen feet,(I could have used a dozen pairs of those!)  and Bellyup to support a pregnant woman’s back and abdomen during the late months of pregnancy.
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Hefty Basic Paper Plate Giveaway

When I received a stack of sturdy Hefty Basics plates in the mail, I decided to give them a go at an upcoming baby shower I’m throwing, knowing that they’d end up in the compost bin afterwards. They’re free of inks, dyes or coatings and can be composted after use.

Is Hefty eco-perfect? No. But I do feel like when mainstream manufacturers like Hefty start to make environmental efforts, the impact can be tremendous. It makes me think of Stoneyfield Farm Yogurt working with Wal Mart to make organic products available to the masses.  Like many conscientious consumers, I avoid Wal Mart, but their partnership with Stoneyfield Farm does get eco-friendly products in places where they wouldn’t previously be an option.
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The Eco-nomical Baby Guide First Anniversary Giveaway!

Exactly one year ago yesterday, our book, The Eco-nomical Baby Guide: Down-to-Earth Ways for Parents to Save Money and the Planet, hit store shelves.  It took us three years of hands-on research and thousands of drafts before we were satisfied with our practical green guide for new parents.  We flavored the manuscript with humor, anecdotes, and lots of humility as we tried to convey what we wished we would have known before our babies arrived.  The cloth diaper information we provide is highly user friendly, but there ‘s also information on buying less, buying used and buying green that helped each of us save over five thousand dollars on our babies’ first year alone.
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Pampering Holiday Gifts for Pregnant Women: Indulging the Expectant Mothers on Your List

Pregnant women need pampering.  Why?  Because when their feet are massaged, when their tongues are bathed in dark chocolate, and when they are immersed in honey bubble bath, their babies are enjoying an atmosphere of relaxation and contentment as well.   Those bambinos will be getting piles of presents in the months to come, but new and expectant moms deserve some special thought as well.

After trolling the Internet for the perfect gifts (and remembering my own pregnancy cravings), here’s what I came up with:

The Microwaveable Flax Seed Filled Neck Pillow or Momma Earth Herbals Aromatherapy Packs are perfect solutions for driving away winter chill while luxuriating in relaxation.  (Please consider a few free foot massage coupons to accompany these lovely gifts!)
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It’s The Last Day of the Sealy Naturalis Crib Mattress with Organic Cotton Giveaway!

You could be the lucky winner of a Sealy Naturalis Crib Mattress with Organic Cotton! Go to our organic crib mattress giveaway post to enter multiple times. We are looking forward to randomly selecting the winner after midnight PST tonight and emailing them with the news. What a fantastic holiday gift for you or someone you love. We’ll post the winner’s name in the next few days. Great luck!

Listen to our PregTASTIC Podcast and Enjoy Greenbabyguide’s Epic Radio Debut!

A short while ago I had the honor of being a guest on PregTASTIC, the online radio show for expectant families. It’s a wonderful program that has hosted a multitude of experts including Dr. Robert Sears and Dr. Harvey Karp, but I managed to overcome my nerves while sharing our simple green “progress not perfection” approach  for a full 35 minutes.

Non-pregnant people tend to glaze over quickly when I start speaking of my passion for cloth diapers and secondhand onesies, but Sunny was a great host and the panel of pregnant women had terrific thoughts to contribute.  And it was a treat to be able to share all that we’ve so carefully packed into the Eco-nomical Baby Guide!
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Top Five Green Holiday Gifts for Pregnant Moms


The Eco-nomical Baby Guide

Over the years we have reviewed some fabulous products that just might be a perfect find for the pregnant mother on your holiday gift list this year.

  1. The Eco-nomical Baby Guide is the book that we both wish we would have had while pregnant.  It emphasizes going green by reducing, reusing and recycling (saving you thousands!) and provides loads of insider tips on cloth diapering.  Plus it’s packed with reviews of quality green gear for every price point. Did I mention that we wrote it? We may be a tad bit biased, but this is a beautiful and very helpful gift!
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