Bringing Lincoln Home {and a couple of reviews}

*I received the products mentioned in this blog post for free in exchange for a review on my blog.  As always, all opinions are 100% honest and my own!

We brought baby Lincoln home on Saturday afternoon, May 17th, after spending 48 hours in the hospital.  It’s amazing how, even after three kids, you have battling feelings of relief and panic when being issued your discharge papers from the hospital.  As much as I was looking forward to sleeping in my own bed, taking a shower, and getting back into our little groove…I also was keenly aware that by going home, I was also going to now be responsible for 3 lives, day-to-day activities and chores, and giving up sleep.

When our girls were born, we didn’t slow down.  The new baby just got toted along for the ride.  We went out to eat, we visited friends, we went to church.  But even though our schedule wasn’t really interrupted, I was constantly worrying about dirty hands touching the baby, the sun in the baby’s eyes, strangers staring, etc.

So when Trisha from Cute As a Button Etsy Shop contacted me about doing a review for her tag toys that double as reminders to wash hands, I jumped at the chance.  I LOVED the idea of a little sign for the carseat carrier, and so incorporating it onto a hanging toy was perfect!

Cute as a Button has a ton of different color/fabric combinations, and several different ways to ask people to wash hands.  I chose the more straight-forward request, and then added on a little hand sanitizer onto the clip as well.  No excuses for germy hands!

Wash Your Hands before touching the baby Tag Toy from Cute As a Button Etsy Shop

I have gotten SO many compliments on my tag toy….people are loving the idea, and I love that I don’t have to be the bad guy anymore by having to awkwardly ask people to wash their hands.  Cute as a Button has lots of other things as well, check out their Etsy Shop to see all of the embroidered and monogrammed items: including seat belt covers, bloomers, safety items, etc.  You can also follow them on Facebook or on Pinterest.

And you might remember Heather from Gemini Red Creations, from my Big Baby Giveaway last month.  She made me a carseat carrier tent to die for!  I had always been skeptical about them for two reasons.

a) Lincoln would be at his tiniest/most vulnerable during the HOT summer months
b) I make and use a carseat carrier cushion on my carseat handle.  I can’t live without it.  So I was worried that the tent wouldn’t fit around it, or that it would be awkward to use both items together.

Carseat Tent from Gemini Red Creations and Tag Toy from Cute as a Button Etsy Shop - Palmettos and Pigtails

But Heather’s tent ended up being perfect for us!  It has the adorable tie print cotton on the outside, and a lightweight flannel liner on the inside.  It’s heavy enough to protect the baby from sun, wind and loud noises, but doesn’t trap the heat inside the carrier.  The straps that go around the carseat handle are sturdy, and located in a wider position…which accommodate my carrier cushions perfectly!  And I love that it’s open in the middle, but the fabric is wide enough that it can overlap easily to hide the baby if needed.  And have you ever seen such a cute fabric print?  Just the right amount of subtle boy! =)

You can follow Gemini Red Creations on Facebook, Pinterest, or Shop her current products.  She’s got a ton of crafty products, from jewelry to aprons to pillows!  Go check her shop out!

Needless to say, these two items have become staples for us, as we cart Little Man around in his carrier every day.  I love the way they look, and I’m confident that both the Tag Toy and the Carseat Tent are keeping him safe and germ free!

Palmettos and Pigtails Signature

Play Garden Mt Pleasant Giveaway!

With less than a week left until Baby Lincoln arrives, I am in panic mode.  No, I’m not panicking about having a third child.  Or having my first boy.  As sad as it is, I’m panicking about losing my Tuesday and Thursday “me” times.  When both of the girls are in school, I get a couple of hours to do….well, whatever I need to do!  Usually it’s blogging on Tuesdays and errands on Thursdays.  Not the most glamorous “me” time…but it is my “me” time!

Play Garden Mt Pleasant, SC summer camp giveaway from Palmettos and Pigtails

So when the kind ladies at Play Garden Mt Pleasant invited me out for the morning, I jumped at the chance to see a drop-in play space for kids, so that mom’s can grab a little “me” time.  Little did I know, I was going to be treated to an early Mother’s Day gift from those awesome gals!  We arrived and the girls got settled playing with various manipulatives with the other 10 kids or so in there.  I was all set to talk to the owners for a few minutes and then head out with the girls.  But I was awe-struck when they insisted that I leave on my own for 4 glorious hours of “me” time where they played with and fed my children!  BEST FOUR HOURS OF MY LIFE.

When I came back after lunch to get the girls, I got a fantastic tour of the Play Garden’s various educational areas, and a run down of how the program works.

Basically, Moms can drop their kids off at Play Garden in Mount Pleasant anytime during their open hours.  And they can leave the kids there for up to four hours without any sort of reservation or commitment.  Payment is per child, per hour, with discounts if you have a yearly membership there.  They also have school break sessions and summer camps which are longer program times than the four hours.

Programming alternates between structured and unstructured play….with activities in the reading, manipulatives, gross motor, art, cooking and dramatic play areas.   The structured activities are customized to be appropriate for all ages of children who participate (12 month walkers through 12 years), with some of the older kids also serving as “helpers.”  All of the play structures and toys are eco-friendly, and the staff have occasional special programming that includes sensory play, yoga, Spanish, and Legos for no extra charge.

Parents can opt to have their kids stay for lunch or snack for a small extra fee.  My girls got to try lunch there courtesy of Play Garden’s partnership with Whole Foods, and ate veggies, hummus, and rice cakes…all organic!  After lunch, all the kids pile into the quiet area {complete with comfy couches and pillows} to watch a kid-friendly movie for a little down time while their tummies settle.  I LOVED that on the application I filled out, it specifically asked if there were any movie/tv restrictions that I preferred.  I’m very careful about the stuff my kids can watch, so I really appreciated that they even asked!

So this week, in honor of Mother’s Day {and summer quickly approaching}, Play Garden Mt Pleasant is offering a giveaway to my local moms!  And I made it super easy for you to enter to win this…with the easiest one being just to share the giveaway with your friends!

The prize for the winner will be four hours of creative learning and fun for up to three of your kids, including lunch!  Children must be from the same family.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!

Palmettos and Pigtails Signature

What’s on my Delivery Packing Checklist {and a Thirty-One Bags Review!}

As you know, this month I’m having a HUGE #BigBabyGiveaway, where I partnered up with some awesome ladies to give away some sweet maternity and baby items {ENDS TOMORROW!!}  Well, one of the perks of being a pregnant blogger and doing a giveaway like this, is I get to try out most of the products too!

So today, I thought I’d kill two birds with one stone, by telling you about the awesome Thirty-One Bags Ziptop Utility Tote bag that I received….AND share with you my printable delivery packing checklist {link to print out is at end of post}.

Thirty One Bags Review and Giveaway - Palmettos and Pigtails

I actually have a Thirty-One Utility Tote already, and use it as our family’s pool bag.  It’s interior is easy to wipe down, and can withstand wet bathing suits, sand, and a plethora of toys and snacks.  And the pockets {some mesh, some solid}  are perfect for sunscreen, bottles of water, sunglasses, etc.

Thirty-One Ziptop Organizing Utility Tote: Perfect Bag for your Hospital Delivery Stay - Palmettos and Pigtails

So when my friend Lauren, from Thirty-One Bags asked me to review the new and improved utility tote that has a ZIPTOP, I thought it would be the perfect hospital bag, since it can close!  And have I mentioned the pattern choices?  SO cute!!  I chose the navy and turquoise striped print.

Thirty-One Ziptop Organizing Utility Tote: Perfect Bag for your Hospital Delivery Stay - Palmettos and Pigtails

And now that Baby Lincoln will be arriving within 3 weeks, I want to be prepared.  So I’ve compiled a list of things that I am planning on bringing to the hospital with me.  Since I’ve already done this twice, I feel like I’ve gotten this down to a science now!  Here’s my Delivery Packing Checklist {link to print is at the bottom of the post}.

What you'll really need at the hospital for delivery: A Delivery Packing Checklist - Palmettos and Pigtails

Feel free to download and print this as a file here!  And please Pin {hover over each photo to Pin} and Share {Facebook and Twitter icons at the end of the post}!

I found that the outside pockets are the perfect size for socks and flip flops {both a must for the shower and for general walking around!}, phone chargers and iPod, easy access to chapstick and lotion {both of which I needed constantly during active labor}, and hair and makeup.  Since Hubby will be doing a lot of the “getting stuff” for you, the less digging for that little stuff, the better!  And  the main part was the perfect size for pajamas and changes of clothes (bring maternity clothes…your belly won’t be ready yet for non-maternity!}.  The zip top will keep all of my “delicates” {aka Granny Panties} inside and hidden.

Thirty-One Ziptop Organizing Utility Tote: Perfect Bag for your Hospital Delivery Stay - Palmettos and Pigtails

Although you will most likely deliver in a hospital gown, you’ll want to change into a nursing tank/bra shortly afterwards, and some comfy clothes to accept visitors in.  I also had Loo help me put on some basic foundation and brush my hair right after delivery, knowing that I’d be in a lot of pictures.  I didn’t go overboard, but just cleaned up a little, you know?

Baby Amelia's Debut - Palmettos and Pigtails

*Top Secret Mama info {maybe skip this paragraph if you are a Dad-to-Be….} Mama, you are going to need some “ahem” undies protection.  Pack 5 or 6 JUMBO {like, biggest you can find} maxi pads and OLD underwear that you may need to just throw out afterwards.  I didn’t put this on the list, because my hospital gives it to me, but you may also need a stool softener and witch hazel pads {like Tucks} to line your undies with to help with swelling.  Don’t worry about all that too much…you’ll forget about the need for these things a couple of weeks after delivery!  {It’s called Momnesia!}

A boppy is an absolute necessity in the makes a great pillow for mom, helps with feeding, and lets Big Sisters/Brothers hold the new baby! Palmettos and Pigtails

Do bring a hoppy…they are great to sleep with, and obviously are terrific help for feeding.  And bring your personal pillow, but make sure you have a pillowcase on it that you will recognize, so you don’t accidentally leave it there!

If you want to win your OWN Thirty-One Ziptop Utility Tote {with your monogram and choice of fabric}, along with over $500 worth of other Mama and Baby goodies, don’t forget to enter my Big Baby Giveaway {which ends April 30th!!}.  Click on this link, or paste it into your browser to go to the giveaway page.

Well, I’m all ready for Baby Lincoln’s debut!  Do you have any other suggestions of items to pack?  Leave a comment, so we can ALL benefit!

Palmettos and Pigtails Signature

Norwex Microfiber and Enviro Cloth Review

For some reason this pregnancy has spurred a small revolution in my house.  I haven’t completely gone “hippy,” “granola,” “crunchy,” or even “organic,” but I find myself caring more and more about what I’m putting inside my body and in my home.  I’ve been better about buying organic fruits and veggies, and at least thoroughly washing those that aren’t!  And no matter how many coupons I have, and how cheap I can get it, I haven’t bought any new cleaning products in almost a year!

So I was thrilled when my old friend Chandler contacted me about participating in my #BigBabyGiveaway {click here to enter…it’s the last three days!!!}.  I had heard of the Norwex products in general, but didn’t know very much about them.  But Chandler was determined to make a believer out of me…{and it worked!}.  She sent me a Household Package to try out, which comes with an Enviro Cloth {for cleaning}, a Window Cloth {for windows and mirrors} and a two sided Dusting Mitt.

The Enviro cloth has been awesome….everything from wiping down counters and tables, to cleaning car dashboards and dusting.  I use it both wet and dry, and because I can fold it into small squares, I can use it over and over…rinsing it out in between uses.  And the Dusting Mitt is amazing too…gets the job done and just needs to be washed once a week with my laundry.

My review of the Norwex Window Cloth - Palmettos and Pigtails

But the Window Cloth has been my favorite so far.  Between dog nose marks on the windows, hand prints on the glass doors, and Heaven knows what the marks on the Playroom Doors {pictured above} are, needless to say….my windows are pretty constantly dirty.

I have to admit, I was pretty skeptical that I would be able to clean all the windows {with one microfiber cloth}, with just water…and no streaks.  But, as you can see in the photo above, it worked perfectly!  I just rinsed and wrung out the cloth well in between windows.  I found that if the cloth was too wet, it would leave a few streaks….but once I really wrung it out, it was fine!

How Norwex Microfiber Works - Palmettos and Pigtails

So, how it works is that the microfiber cloths have slivers of micro-silver woven into them.  When wet, the micro-silver uses a self-purification process to eliminate mold, fungi and bacterial odors within 24 hours.  For more information on the cleaning process, check out this newscast proving how well the Enviro cloth works!

Chandler also has a blog, Crazy Cleaning Lady, that tells you all the neat ways to use the Norwex products.  Check out her site to find out more about how Norwex microfiber really cleans.

Norwex has a ton of other products too, including a kids’ line, kitchen and bathroom specific products, and body care items.  For more information, or to host a party {in person, or online} in order to get some sweet discounts, contact Chandler!

Want one of your own for FREE?  Enter my #BigBabyGiveaway {ends on Wednesday!} to win a Household Package…and $500 worth of other baby products!

Click here to enter!

Palmettos and Pigtails Signature

Ridin’ in Style: Our New MiniVan and Evenflo Carseat!

**I participated in this sponsored campaign on behalf of One2One Network. I received the carseat mentioned for free, but as always, all opinions stated are my own.**

I never thought I’d be a minivan mom.  Not that I have anything against moms with minivans.  My own mother was one, and I drove said minivan for several years in high school.  I just figured we’d never have enough kids to need a minivan, and since we’ve always had a Ford Explorer with a third row seating option…we’ve never really needed one.

However.  Between the Explorer breaking down numerous times in our 6 years of owning it, the third row being virtually inaccessible to anyone over 45 lbs, and a 3rd baby {and 3rd carseat} on the way….it was inevitable.

Chrysler Town and Country..the perfect fir for our new Evenflo Carseat - Palmettos and Pigtails

So Dave and I broke down {after the Explorer did.  Again.} and headed to Carmax.  We got a fantastic deal on a 2013 Chrysler Town and Country with all the bells and whistles we need {which is not many!}.  I just wanted heated seats {didn’t get them}, a DVD player for long trips, and an easy entry to the “way back” row.  Two out of three ain’t bad!

Interior of new Town and Country minivan...compliments our new Evenflo Symphony DXL Carseat perfectly! Palmettos and Pigtails

To make my week even better, I was sent a FREE Evenflo Symphony DLX carseat to try out.  It was just in time too, since Baby Boy will be arriving in about a month, and Millie’s hand-me-down carseat was getting old, squeaky and stinky.  I was thrilled when I realized that the Evenflo carseat accommodates kids 5-110lbs…so just about when Millie is ready {and big enough!} to graduate to a booster seat, Baby Boy will be ready to leave the carrier and venture into the Evenflo carseat as well!  But I love having versatile carseats, because with our busy schedule, who knows which kid will be riding in which carseat….and all THREE of my kids can ride in this new one!

I just love the look of the Evenflo carseat…I find it very stylish and gender-neutral.  Millie just loves that it has cup-holders! And according to a study conducted by American Baby and Safe Kids Worldwide, new moms are 300% more likely to get into an accident than other drivers, in part due to tending to an upset baby.  But we’ve found the fabric to be really soft and the whole carseat to be really comfy.  And happy baby means a safe driver!

Riding in Style in her new Evenflo Symphony DXL Carseat!  Palmettos and Pigtails

One of my biggest concerns about the new minivan, is that it has leather seats {yay for wiping down, boo for sticking to sweaty legs!}, and to top that off…they are black.  And since all of our cars live in the driveway since the garage is Dave’s workshop, that means the sun will be beating down on black leather seats all. summer. long.

But, the silver lining is that the Platinum Series of the Evenflo Carseats feature NASA-developed Outlast® technology, a temperature regulating fabric that keeps babies and toddlers comfortable during hot and cold weather.  Which is key, because Millie is a sweaty kid.  It’s nice to know that the sides of the carseat have little buckle pockets to keep the hot metal buckles off of her as well.  Summertime in the South is a go for this carseat!

Riding in Style in her new Evenflo Symphony DXL Carseat! Palmettos and Pigtails

Palmettos and Pigtails Signature

#BigBabyGiveaway all April Long!

Scroll down to the next post to see my most recent post!

Don’t forget to enter our biggest giveaway ever!  Over 20+ items to win, totaling over $550 worth of products for moms, babies and kids!  Enter everyday by sharing the giveaway on Facebook and Twitter!

April's Big Baby Giveaway!  Enter each day!

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Palmettos and Pigtails Signature

Big Baby Giveaway – It’s Finally Here!!!

Y’all know that we are expecting our first baby boy in about a month, and we are soooo excited!  Even though it’s only been two and half years since we had Millie, I’ve forgotten how exciting baby stuff can be!  And there are so many new and innovative items out there!

Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails

I am completely addicted to Etsy.  I not only sell my baby items on there, but I LOVE finding other moms who have a passion for hand-making items for children.  And I can’t think of a better win than to buy something that I need, from someone who has a passion for children and moms…and cares enough to take time out of her busy day to make those items at home.

So, today I am ECSTATIC to bring you my Big Baby Giveaway!  I have been working with a ton of talented Etsy and local artists and experts to bring you a collection of maternity and baby items that any Mom would drool over!

Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails

And over the next few months, I’ll be introducing you to some of these ladies {and gents} on a deeper level, as I gush over the items that they have so graciously provided to me!

But for now, let me show you what’s in the baby giveaway, and who will be giving it to you!

Let’s begin with a big, beautiful bag to put all of your prizes in!  Lauren from Thirty-One Bags is giving one lucky winner a Ziptop Utility Tote to store all of your goodies in!  This multipurpose bag can be anything from a hospital bag to a pool bag!  The winner will get to choose their fabric and put a monogram on it as well!

Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails

I met Olivia, the founder of Developmental Duffle, at a Family Expo here in the LowCountry.  She is a local gal who took the task of finding developmentally appropriate toys for children {birth-five years} into her own hands.  She now compiles duffle bags full of educational, enjoyable and enriching toys for new moms.  And she has been gracious enough to give the winner of my baby giveaway a complete duffle bag full of infant toys!

Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails

Swati is a new friend from Etsy.  Her shop there, Tinytweets, specializes in retro-modern handmade accessories for your new baby.  She is giving away an oh-so-cute fox pillow and one of the cleverest items I’ve seen in awhile, an Aventi bottle wrap {It’s a cozy for your baby’s bottle!}.

Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and PigtailsBig Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails

Rene and Jeremy’s CD, It’s a Big World World, is one of my family’s all-time favorite albums.  Their harmonies are soooo relaxing….I listened to them during both of my labors so far, and plan on continuing the tradition with this baby too!  They’ve also got some great covers and awesome sing-alongs.  It’s one of the few “kid” CD’s that I {gasp!} will listen to when the kids aren’t even around!!  Click on the picture to go to their site and hear some music samples.

Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails

I met Heather from Gemini Red Creations when I went to Bloggy Boot Camp in Charlotte last year.  Not only is she a part of my tribe, but she makes some beautiful jewelry and baby items!  She is contributing a car seat tent, a car organizer, AND a door latch cover!
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and PigtailsBig Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Grace Hill Media promotes faith-based and family friendly movies to the public.  They are giving away a copy of Veggie Tales: The Little House That Stood…a kid-friendly version of Matthew 7:24 verse about building your house on a solid foundation.
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Y’all have already met my girl, Holly, from Bunyoni Blankies!  She is the brains behind these ingenious carseat blankets that keep your lovey warm AND safe in his carseat.  My little friend Connor got to try one of these cozy blankies this past winter and loved it!
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Amber teething necklaces are all the rage these days.  From curing teething ailments, to ear infections to sleeping through the night…every baby needs one!  Monica from Bouncy Baby Boutique is donating one of her Honey and Lemon Amber Teething Necklaces to my winner.
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
My friend Stephanie is an amazing author and blogger over at Binkies and Briefcases!  You may have read her hilarious contributions for the book, I Just Want to Pee Alone.  Well, she has moved on to writing children’s books as well now, and tackles the hard subject of kids and grief in her new book, The Cookie Jar Parable.  The winner of my #BigBabyGiveaway will win a copy of the ebook.
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
My old friend Chandler {whom I used to work with about 10 years ago at summer camp!}, is donating a Norwex Basic Household Cleaning Pack.  This pack of chemical-free cleaning products includes an Enviro-Cloth for everywhere, a Dusting Mitt, and a Window Cloth.  Perfect for those nesting days before baby comes…and everyday after baby comes!
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Carrie from Venezia Art for Kids creates beautiful prints using your child’s name and themes from nature.  Perfect for nurseries all the way through childhood bedrooms!  The winner will get to choose a 10X20 paper name art for their child, made to order.
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Rachel from 38 Stitches is donating a set of 3 cloth blocks.  The winner will get to choose which fabric prints they’d like from the 38 Stitches Etsy Shop.
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
I met my friend Alison at Bloggy Boot Camp as well, but since she is also a local gal, we’ve also had a chance to hang out with other LowCountry Blogger tribe members.  Alison blogs over at TheAlisonMarieBlog, but is also a successful Shaklee rep.  Shaklee promotes an overall healthy lifestyle, including weight loss, beauty, home care and nutrition.  Alison has been kind enough to donate some organic ShakleeBaby Soothing Lotion to the baby giveaway.
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Blessing and Light is an Etsy shop dedicated to creating original concrete bookends, magnets and garden markers.  They are graciously giving you your choice of any two blocks to create a bookend set!
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Every girl loves a bright chevron scarf in the Spring…Hold Me Close creates beautiful and fashionable infinity scarves that double as a nursing cover!  The baby giveaway winner will win a gift certificate for one of these beauties!!
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Baby Greeters is donating three sets of washable nursing pads and a flannel burp cloth with mink backing to my baby giveaway. Winner chooses the fabric from a HUGE selection!!
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Can you believe you can win ALL of those fabulous gifts?!?!?   It’s over $550 worth of products!!! I’m so excited for you! =)
Below, you’ll find the rafflecopter that you’ll use to enter the giveaway.  Be sure to follow the directions  on the entries you are interested in…because this is such a HUGE baby giveaway, I’ll be double checking the winning entry to make sure that you actually complete the entry {i.e. leave a comment, “Like” a Facebook page, etc.}  No cheating…. :)
You DO NOT HAVE TO complete all of the entries!!  If you have already completed one of the entries {i.e. if you already “Like” Palmettos and Pigtails on FB}, you get to click on that entry button without doing anything!!  And be sure to share this giveaway with any friends you have…if they win and don’t have kids….maybe they’ll give it to you!!!

Good Luck!! {Giveaway ends April 30th!}

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Palmettos and Pigtails Signature

The Best Thing about Being a Mommy Blogger

This post is written by me on behalf of Liz Lange and Ergobaby.  Product was provided.

As you know, a couple of weeks ago I was able to escape for a few days to sunny rainy San Diego, CA to attend the SITSgirls’ Baby Bloggy Boot Camp.  A special blogging workshop just for mommy bloggers!  I arrived a day early, hoping to enjoy my first trip to California by being a tourist.  However, the weather had other plans and it rained for my entire weekend out there!  I was able to grab a few minutes at the beach in between rain showers though…

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

The water was freezing, but my ankles were swollen from the flight…so it was totally worth it!

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

I was lucky enough to stay at the Bahia Resort over in Mission Beach.  They treated me like a queen, going above and beyond with extra {like 10!} pillows for this preggo, and post-its to compensate for my lack of business cards!

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

I was bummed that I forgot my business cards at first, but the silver lining was that handing out post-its was a great conversation starter, and the sticky backs ensured that no one misplaced them! The conference itself was invaluable.  Tiffany and Francesca did a fantastic job of balancing networking, humor and workshops to make the whole day really enjoyable, as well as educational.  They also do a great job of ensuring that new bloggers know their worth, and teach them how to turn their blogging “hobby” into a business that is fulfilling and financially worth it.  And of course, as a mommy blogger, how to balance IT ALL!

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

And then, of course, there was the SWAG.  I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like getting free stuff.  Pens, water bottles, and keychains are the norm.  But not the SITSgirls.  They treat their mommy bloggers RIGHT! =)  They had some fantastic sponsors at Baby Bloggy Boot Camp that gave us samples of products, and some very helpful demonstrations!

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

Since I’m only 8 months pregnant, I haven’t been able to personally test most of this stuff out on a real baby yet.  But, I can tell you that now that the weather is nicer, I am living in my Liz Lange Maternity dress.  It’s flattering and soooooo comfortable!  And since you can buy that brand at Target, it’s price point is perfect as well.

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

And then there was Ergo Baby.  Every mom’s best friend!  And they were kind enough to bring me Ergobaby swaddlers, an Ergobaby wrap AND a brand new Ergobaby 360 Baby Carrier {not even on shelves yet!}.  I simply cannot wait for Baby Boy to arrive so I can wear him all over town.  For now, I’ll Dave will be practicing with Mongo the Monkey.

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

And since I accidentally grabbed a “girl” pack of diapers from The Honest Company {and they were size 3}, I sent them to Betsy to try out on baby Rosie.  She LOVED the adorable prints and stretchiness of the diapers for Rosie….especially now that Ro is all over the place!  I kept the samples of baby wash, laundry detergent and hand soap for myself!

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

It was a whirlwind of a rainy weekend, with the sun finally coming out on my flight home.  But every second I had out in CA was worth it, from the much needed “me time” cooped up in my hotel room, to the “polar bear plunge” that my toes made, to the new friends and great information I gained at the conference.  ‘Til we meet again San Diego!

Palmettos and Pigtails Signature

This post is written by me on behalf of Liz Lange and Ergobaby.  Product was provided.

Valentine’s Day Giveaway! #BelkValentineAd

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Hope you are staying warm and toasty with your honey this weekend!  I just wanted to send you a quick reminder that my Belk giveaway ends tonight!!!

Don’t forget to enter today!

#BelkValentineAd $75 Belk GC Giveaway from Palmettos and Pigtails

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Palmettos and Pigtails Signature

#BelkValentineAd and $75 Belk Giveaway

*This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Belk.  I was compensated for the items in the post.  As always, opinions are my own.*
#BelkValentineAd Belk Giveaway for TWO $75 gift cards from Palmettos and Pigtails

Last week I told you a little bit about how I was going to actually date my husband this year for Valentine’s Day, and thanks to Belk, we are all outfitted!  Our packages came in the mail this week, so I thought I’d give you a sneak peek of our gifts!  {And then give one of two chances to WIN a $75 gift card to Belk!!}

First up, is the iLive Bluetooth Speaker and Stereo System.  I admit that this ended up being a gift for the entire family {and one we’ve been enjoying all week!}.  It sits up on our bar, and charges our cell phones and iPads, while playing music through bluetooth {meaning, my phone doesn’t HAVE to be on it to be used!}.  I’ve found that it’s a good place to keep my phone though, since I can never find it!

#BelkValentineAd iLive Bluetooth and Stereo System…$75 Belk GC Giveaway from Palmettos and Pigtails

For myself, I got a new Karen Kane Wild Card Foldover Maxi Skirt.  It’s super soft, and the fold over waistband is really comfy on my ever-expanding waistline!  {And I just checked the price on this puppy….normally $108, and today it’s $37!!}.

The bag I got for myself was the New Directions Contrast Handle Tote bag {also on sale!!}.  It’s huge, and has a ton of pocket storage.  And I love that it has the choice of handles, or a long cross body strap.

#BelkValentineAd Karen Kane Maxi and New Directions Tote…..$75 Belk GC Giveaway from Palmettos and Pigtails

 And finally, I got Dave some new shoes.  He’s literally worn holes in the bottoms of his last pair, so I thought he could use a style upgrade, and some better quality kicks for work!  These are Florsheim Getaway Slip-ons in brown.  Obviously modeled by Millie, since Dave won’t receive them until next week for our date!

#BelkValentineAd Florsheim Getaway Slipons and a $75 Belk GC Giveaway from Palmettos and Pigtails

Those are some big shoes to fill!  Anyway, It’s so exciting to get packages in the mail, right?  So, enter my giveaway below, and if you are one of TWO winners, you’ll get a $75 gift card to Belk in the mail!  The giveaway ends on Valentine’s Day, so good luck!

#BelkValentineAd $75 Belk GC Giveaway from Palmettos and Pigtails

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Palmettos and Pigtails Signature