Marvelous Monday

Today is Monday such a fun day and the first day back to work for most of us. What do you like about Mondays? Here it is a crisp, cool, and windy day. This reminds me that soon it will be May and the beautiful spring flowers will be in full bloom.

On this Monday I would like to share with you some fun random facts, alternatives to things, and some thoughts for the upcoming week.

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Random Thoughts- 

  • I wake up several times a night to watch the baby monitor, and to keep tabs on little Eli who isn’t so little anymore.
  • It bothers me so much to hear all the sad news about things going on in our world, and what we can do to make it stop.
  • We help shape and mold our children into what we want them to be and how they will end up as adults, so it is important to take that into consideration.
  • We set an example for our kids, they are looking up to us, and watching everything we do. So lets make sure we are setting a good example
  • Kids are only little once, take time to enjoy the little things with them.
  • I have discovered slow mow video on my iphone and it is so incredibly fun.
  • I love Kale and when I eat it, it makes my nose itch
  • Some things that I don’t have that I would love are a mandolin, and a salad spinner
  • House hunting is a lot harder the second time around especially when you aren’t just thinking about the 2 of you. We now have to consider an 18 month old too.
  • We went to a birthday party and they didn’t have anything except for soda to drink so we let Eli have a little bit of sprite, and his face was so funny. Also love the funny faces they make when they eat lemons for the first time.
  • First steps are so cute, they are so wobbly like little penguins.
  • We gave our son a pacifier because it helps prevent SIDS and keeps them from going into a deep sleep. We are now trying to break him of it but its extremely hard.

Alternatives- 

  • Pumpkin carving:

Eli was to little and still will be this year to carve a pumpkin. Luckily there are some other ideas that you can do-

1. You can paint it

2. You can add sitckers to them

3. You can buy the Mr. Potato head kits to decorate them

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  • Public Schools:

We are lucky here depending on the area to have very good schools or decent schools. Some parents however like us are considering different options for schooling. My husband went to private school and my nieces and nephew are all home-schooled. If you have done either of these I would love to hear more.

1. Home-Schooling

2. Charter Schools

3. Private Schools

4. Magnet Schools

5. Christian Private Schools

6. Academies

7. Independent Schools

8. Public School

  • Candy at Halloween and Birthday Parties: 

Alot of parents are trying to teach children how to eat healthier and are wanting them to stay away from sugar and sweets. I am one of those parents. All things in moderation though. So here are some things you can use in place of sweets and candies are holidays and parties. Some of these things can be used in Easter eggs too. We also have to think about kids who may have allergies too, so this is helpful. Lets face it, kids are going to have so much snacks and cupcakes anyway you wont want them to have the extra sugar. With these fun things they won’t miss it anyway.(More on this in an upcoming blog post)

1. Stickers

2. Erasers

3. Bracelets or rings

4. Hair ties

5. Pencils

6. Money

7. Band-Aids

8. Shopkins

9. Toy cars

10. Rubber stamps

11. Silly putty

12. Balloons

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  • Harmful Cleaning Chemicals: 

When you have little ones or you are expecting the last thing you want to be doing is using harsh chemicals to clean and sanitize things. This can be dangerous to you, baby, and kids. There are other things you can use that will clean and sanitize without all those awful fumes. You also most likely have these at home.

1. Vinegar and water- Natural disinfectant

2. Peroxide is also a good product to use while cleaning. It also cleans and disinfects

3. Baking soda- Natural odor eliminator. You can spread this on mattresses, flooring, or furniture. Leave on for 15 mins and then vacuum

4. Peroxide and dawn dish soap mixed together makes and awesome stain remover

5. Best bathroom cleaner- Equal parts of vinegar, Dawn dish soap, and water

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  • Bookstores:

Don’t get me wrong I love bookstores as well as the next guy, but they can be hard to navigate and pricey.  I have found some other options that I love and you can shop at home in your PJS.

1. Usborne Books- This is a great option. Its a online company and you can host a party or find a consultant and order all your books you would need. If you host a party and get a lot of orders you will then intern earn free books too. A great option and a lot of fun

2. Scholastic Book Club- This is usually sent home in the way of a flyer from your child’s school, and they have tons of options for all different ages. You can order online even if you don’t have a child in school and this too is a wonderful and super east option.

3. Book exchanges and swaps- This takes a bit more effort as you have to find people to participate, but it’s just like those mailbox book swaps. You find a group of friends who want to paritivipate and you send them some of your old books, and they send you some of their old ones. You get this maybe once a month and you keep the swap going every month so you always have new books to read.

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Daycares:

OK so not a lot of people think about childcare options when looking for someone or a place to watch your children. There are some awesome options out there besides just daycare centers. The price points can be inexpensive to pretty pricey. (Blog post coming

1. In Home Childcare Center

2. Nanny

3. Preschool

4. Stay at home mom

5. Nanny Share

6. Close Friends or Relatives

7. Babysitters

8. Head Start

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Upcoming Blog Posts to Look Forward to:

I have a little book that I like to jot down ideas, and fill with drafts of posts that I have written. So you will have a ton of them coming, but here are some of my favorites-

1.Things I am loving

2. Favorite Toys

3. Must haves

4. Different Types of Childcare and Nannies- this will be 2 parts

5. A series of Developmental activities

6. Uses for Other things

7. Lots of Reviews

8. Products I recommend

9. Classes and Playdates

10. Breaking the Pacifier- Helpful tips

Well Guys that is it for today. I hope you have enjoyed this post. I look forward to hearing from you. Please tell me more about alternatives you have and anything else you want

ReLaunch

Hello Guys, I am sorry I have been away! Life happened and in a great way. In January of 2014 we found out we were expecting after 7 years of trying and giving up. In September of 2014 we welcomed our sweet baby into the world at 7:04pm, and he was born on our 7th anniversary.

I took a blogging break for a bit and was expecting a quick come back, but I ended up suffering from the worst morning sickness almost until the end of my pregnancy. It was awful but luckily I have a wonderful hubby who was a big help.

When our son got here I just felt like I was wanting to focus on him and spend time with him. I also made the transition to full time stay at home mommy and hubby was working 2 jobs. So life was a bit crazy.

We are now a bit more settled and our little guy isn’t so little anymore at almost 18 months old. So now that he is older I figured it would be much easier to get on and blog.

Still have to look forward to the same fun informative stuff, but I will also throw in a family update once in a while too.

Hopefully I can start out with a bang and get some reviews and giveaways going for the relaunch. Please be patient with me as this is proving to be more difficult than I wanted.

I will continue to post weekly, but the site is going to be under-construction at the same time, so you may see it one way and then the next its different, so I will apologize ahead of time.

I look forward to blogging again and getting to know you guys. Thanks for stopping by. I hope you will subscribe so that you will know when I post something new and fun.

See you guys soon

Here’s One For The Hubby – Bacon Cheeseburger Stuffed Shells

This sounds delicious

The Pinterested Parent

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It is difficult sometimes trying to cook for a family with so many different tastes & dietary needs. I try to eat healthy as often as I can. I cut out extra fat as much as possible, leaving out butters & oils, trading in regular bacon for turkey bacon and switching refined pastas & breads for whole wheat products. This works fine for me, but often leaves my husband missing his full fat options. One substitute he is not so keen on is turkey bacon in place of regular pork bacon. He loves his bacon. So this one is for you honey. Enjoy.

Ingredients:

About 17-20 cooked shells

1 lb of ground meat

10 slices of chopped bacon

5 slices of American cheese

3/4 cup of chopped onion

1 10 oz can of drained diced tomatoes

1/4 cup of ketchup

1 tsp ground mustard

1/2 tsp pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven…

View original post 158 more words

Subscribers:

If you subscribe to my blog to receive a email every time that I do a post, please send me your email address too anannysperspective@gmail.com, I have moved to self hosted and it has lost all my subscribers, so you are not receiving updates when I post. I would love to be able to add you manually to the new site. Thanks Renee

MIA-Under Construction

I am sorry I have been MIA for the last couple weeks. There has been a lot going on and I wanted to let you know I am still here and I haven’t forgotten about you all.

A lot of people are taking a vacation from blogging and hearing up for the new year. That was not my intent at all. I am sad that I haven’t been blogging. I love blogging and helping all of you.

I have lots of reviews lined up and lots of posts I need to get caught up on. So what’s the deal?

Here are some reasons:

* I’ve been sick
* The holidays
* Trying to switch from free blogging to paid hosting.
* Dog sitting

But don’t worry I hope to be up and running in the next week. In the meantime I hope you will read some of my other posts.

As always thanks for your support.

A Hanukkah Tradition

I have to start by saying that I don’t celebrate Hanukkah nor am I Jewish. However I do like to talk about all the Holidays from around the world when it comes to December. I think it is important to teach children about different cultures and different Holidays that people celebrate. In doing this children learn about cultures from around the world, they learn about how people celebrate differently, why they celebrate certain holidays, and it helps children to learn that everyone is different but that is ok.

A part of the Jewish celebration is a food called Latkes or Potato pancakes. They are flat like a pancake, but taste like a hash brown. They are super easy to make and really tasty. The traditional way to cook them is fry them in a little oil, and serve them with sour cream or applesauce. I also think that this is a great recipe to make with little ones. The only part that they can’t do is the cooking.

Here is the Recipe with Pictures too:

Potato Latkes-

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Ingredients:

  • 1 pound of potatoes washed and peeled
  • 1/2 cup of finely chopped onion
  • 1 large egg- lightly beaten
  • 2 tbsp. flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup of oil- I prefer olive oil, but you can use coconut oil, or vegetable oil

Accompaniments- Applesauce and sour cream

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Preparation:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 250*- This is for keeping them warm
  2. Grate the potatoes using a grater, or a food processer
  3. Chop the onions finely
  4. Spread the onions and potatoes onto a paper towels and ring out the excess moisture
  5. Add the onions, potatoes, egg, salt, pepper, and flour and mix until it is combined.
  6. Add oil to a pan and heat on medium high
  7. Spoon out mixture and form into a flat circle about 3 inches in diameter
  8. Fry on both sides until it is brown and crispy
  9. Drain on paper towels, and keep in oven so they will stay warm
  10. Serve with apples sauce and sour cream. Enjoy

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Notes you can add 1 more egg, or more flour if you want the mixture to make it bind together better. I hope that you will make this recipe with your family. It would make a great addition to your breakfast or it can be served alone too.

How do you celebrate Hanukkah if you are Jewish?

My Favorite Holiday Books for Kids

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Holidays are a time for many things, some of my favorite things are spending time with family, decorating the house/tree, Christmas shopping, and reading books. I have told you several times how much I love reading, how important I think it is to read to kids, and for you to instill the love of reading in your kids. During the Holidays it is a perfect time to add reading a special holiday book as a family every night. This is a tradition I hope to share with my kids, and I hope they share it with several generations down the road. I can remember reading on Christmas Eve after church service, “Twas the Night Before Christmas”. It today is still one of my favorites, and I love to read it with such enthusiasm. I hope that you will take this list and go to the local library or book store and share them with your family.

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Photo credit Pinterest

Christmas Book List:

  • How The Grinch Stole Christmas- By: Dr. Seuss
  • 10 Christmas Wishes- By: Claire Freedman
  • One Snowy Night- By: M. Christina Butler
  • Santa Claus Funny Faces and Sounds- By: Roger Priddy
  • God Gave Us Christmas- By: Lisa Tawn Bergren
  • Merry Christmas Mouse- By: Laura Numeroff
  • Gingerbread Baby- By: Jan Brett
  • The Mitten- By: Jan Brett
  • Christmas in the Manger- By: Nola Buck
  • Bear Stays up for Christmas- By: Karma Wilson
  • Counting Christmas- By: Karen Katz
  • Where is Baby’s Christmas Present- By: Karen Katz
  • Nutcracker Twinkle Toes- By: Karen Katz
  • Snowmen At Christmas- By: Caralyn Buehner
  • Who’s That Knocking on Christmas Eve- By: Jan Brett
  • Who is Coming to Our House?- By: Joseph Slate
  • Duck and Goose It’s Time for Christmas- By: Tad Hills
  • Olive the Other Reindeer- By: J.Otto Seibold
  • The Polar Express- By: Chris Van Allsburg
  • Christmas in the Barn- By: Margaret Wise Brown
  • Twas the Night Before Christmas- Any version
  • The Christmas Story-By: Jane Werner Watson
  • The Best Christmas pageant Ever- By: Barbara Robinson
  • Merry Christmas Stinky Face- By: Lisa McCourt
  • Room for A Little One: A Christmas Tale- By: Martin Waddell
  • Llama Llama Holiday Drama- By: Anna Dewdney

There are so many more, but these are just a few of my favorites. There are some for all ages and some religious too.

Books for Hanukkah:

  • My Two Holidays : A Christmas and Hanukkah Story- By: Danielle Novack
  • Light The Lights- By: Margeret Moorman
  • Maccabee: The Story of Hanukkah- By: Tilda Balsley
  • Hanukkah- By: Roni Schotter
  • Elmo’s Little Driedel- By: Naomi Klienburg
  • Chanukah Lights Everywhere- By: Michael J. Rosen
  • Happy Hanukkah Curious George- By: H.A. and Margret Rey
  • Bright Baby Touch and Feel Hanukkah- By: Roger Priddy
  • How do Dinosaurs Say Happy Chanukah- By: Jane Yolen
  • Where is Baby’s Dreidel?- By: Karen Katz
  • Baby Tiger and Friends Celebrate Chanukah- By: Lisa Ginsburg
  • My First Chanukah- By: Tomie de Paola
  • Hanukah Lights- By: David Martin
  • Moishe’s Miracle: A Hanukah Story- By: Laura Krauss Melmed
  • Chanukah Bugs- By: David A. Carter
  • Runaway Driedel- By:  Lesléa Newman
  • The Magic Dreidels: A Hanukkah Story- By: Eric A. Kimmel
  • My Chanukah Playbook- By: Salina Yoon

These are just some of my favorites there are many more out there, so please check them out. They are for all age groups.

Kwanzaa Book List:

  • My First Kwanzaa- By: Karen Katz
  • My First Kwanzaa Book- By: Deborah Chocolate
  • Seven Candles For Kwanzaa- By: Create a book
  • Kwanzaa Kids- By: Joan Holub
  • Imani’s Gift at Kwanzaa- By: Denise Burden-Patmon
  • Seven Spools of Thread: A Kwanzaa Story- By: Angela Shelf-Medearis
  • K is For Kwanzaa- By: Juwanda G. Ford
  • A Kwanzaa Miracle- By: Gayle
  • The Sound of Kwanzaa- By: Dimetria Tukunbo
  • Kevin’s Kwanzaa- By: Lisa Bullard
  • What is Kwanzaa- By: Susan Beasley
  • Little Rabbit’s Kwanzaa- By: Donna L. Washington
  • A Kwanzaa Celebration- By: Nancy Williams
  • The Seven Days of Kwanzaa- By: Angela Shelf Medearis

Ok these are just some of my favorite Kwanzaa books, I am sure that there are many more. I hope that you will enjoy this list of books.

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Well that is the end of my book list, I hope that whatever holiday you celebrate you include some of these books in your celebrations. When we talk about this time of year as a nanny I have a theme for the month called- ” Christmas Around the World”. We talk about how countries all around the world celebrate Christmas and these are the main holidays that I include in that list. Thanks so much for reading this post.

What are some of your favorite Christmas books to read with your children? I would love to hear. Whatever holiday you celebrate I hope it is a great one filled with lots of memories.

Giggles and Wiggles Boutique

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I know that most of you are like me and love to shop for adorable kids clothes, and clothes that are unique. It can be hard to find cute things that are unique for your kids. That is why I love to shop at small businesses. They offer a great variety of items, stuff that is unique, and affordable prices. When you do find items that are unique most of time you wont find the size that you need. Sometimes I think shopping for adults is harder than shopping for kids, but I was so wrong. When you do go somewhere and find cute clothes they are really expensive and the ones that are on sale never have the right sizes. That is where Giggles and Wiggles comes in. They have such cute things and the prices are really affordable.

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Giggles and Wiggles Boutique is a cute little Etsy Shop that is here in the United States. Becky lives in California. She lives in California with her husband and their 2 daughters. Her daughters are what inspired her to open her shop. She has a small business and by supporting her and shopping at her store it helps her to be able to stay at home with her little girls. She works daily on brining in and thinking of new ideas to make. You can get anything from her shop, from head to toe.

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I found Giggles and Wiggles Boutique when I was shopping for a gift for a little one. I was so surprised at the cute items she offers. She has rompers, tutus, leggings, head bands, hats, and complete outfits. Whether you are looking to take pictures of you little one, or you want them to just be all dolled up Giggles and Wiggles Boutique has all of your needs covered. You can get a complete set from hair bow, to outfit, to leggings, and shoes. Now for us it is a little bit cooler her in NC than it is in CA but that is ok because you can add a long sleeve shirt and the leggings and your little one will be set to go.

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She also carries great holiday outfits like for Halloween and Christmas. These will make your Christmas pictures or Halloween pictures look unique, and make your little one look even more cute than they already are. You can even use one of her petti coat, and the lace leggings and you have a Halloween costume ready to go. She also offers upgraded shipping if you need it faster. The turn around time on the items is fast, and shipping is fast too. I received the cutest little ribbon and lace romper with leggings to review. You will see it below. The quality of her items is unbelievable and they are so cute. I also love that you can see how much work goes into each item and how much she loves what she does. The romper was finished off with a bow and a rhinestone, which gives it just a little something extra. The leggings are finished off with a little toile which makes both of these items all that more special.

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Becky’s items will make great gifts for baby showers, birthdays, and Christmas. I would also love to recommend her items if you are having pictures made of your little one, I think they would make a great addition, especially if you have a girly girl. You can find Becky’s Shop on Etsy at https://www.etsy.com/shop/GigglesandWigglesBtq, she has over 250 items listed in her store. She also has a Facebook page, and if you like her on Facebook you will get a discount at her shop. You can find her Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/GigglesandWigglesbtq

Everything came beautifully packaged too. I love that you get a little sticker to seal your cute little package, and you also get a business card too.

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I hope that you will stop by her shop, and her Facebook page and say hi to her. I am sure that you will love all the items that she has to offer. I am also sure that she would love for you to order something and give her your feedback.

As always thanks for stopping by my blog. I hope you like this review.

Disclosure: I received a romper set, and leggings in exchange for my review. All opinions are my own, and I have not been persuaded or influenced in anyway. This blog has also not been compensated for this review.

Tiny Prints Review

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Merry Christmas and Happy holidays from the King’s. I got engaged to James and set a date to get married. It was then that I decided we needed to send out save the date cards to all of our family and friends. So we took a picture and I went online to order our save the date cards. They weren’t anything really impressive and I remember that we paid quite a bit of money for them. When we received them they were nothing but a picture with some words on them. Not fancy at all, and I thought that for the price we paid I was expecting a little bit more. I guess when you are in love and planning a wedding you over look these things. I have always wanted to send out holiday cards but for several reasons I have only done it once. The time that I did send out holiday cards they were store bought. The reasons I didn’t want to do the photo card thing for the Holiday cards were: We had already paid lots for our save the dates that I wasn’t impressed with, and we hadn’t taken a picture worth going on a holiday card.

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That was until this year, we had pictures professionally done for the first time since we got married in 2007. So I decided it was time to do holiday cards for this year. The only problem is that I decided I wanted to have the dogs in our holiday cards and we didn’t take the dogs with us the first time to have our pictures made. So this meant either put a picture on there without the dogs or take one at home. We opted to take one at home, no where as near the quality of the professional ones, but still it works. I always love to look at all the holiday photo cards that people send out, and where they have them made. There are lots of places out there that you can have cards made up from the local drug store, to Walmart, and even some online like Snapfish or hallmark. All of these are great cards but I just wanted something that was a little bit more of high quality and a little bit more unique.

Picking out Christmas cards was almost as hard as picking out wedding rings, or a car. It was hard for me because their were so many beautiful choices and so many different options. This is when I had to mark my favorites and compare them side by side. Then it was a process of weeding them out one by one, and for this I enlisted the help of James(my husband). We were able to pick the perfect card, that said the perfect thing. I also choose to pick a Christmas card, not a holiday card because everyone we know celebrates Christmas. However if you like to send out a holiday card or Hanukkah card they have great options of those too. I think it was really hard to choose because I loved all the designs so much, and I think that it is great that they give you so many options.

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So for our choice we went with the Wishing Tree Card. We decided to have it be square edges, but you can choose Scalloped, Ticket, Rounded, or Bracket. You also can choose different finishes on the photos too, from matte, semi gloss, pearl white shimmer, or premium double thick matte. You can also choose if you want them to print the to and from addresses on the envelopes so all you have to do is stuff them and add a stamp. We decided to get coordinating return address labels instead. Oh and you can also choose the color of the envelopes and if you want insert liners for the envelopes too. I choose the coordinating envelope liner to go in our envelope and a plain white envelope. Another option is you can choose what color you want your cards to be too, depending on which card you choose, ours had 3 color choices. You can also choose to have coordinating address labels or you can have them print your address and the addresses that they are going to.

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When you choose your cards you can choose how many photos you want on the front from 0 to 6 or more. You can also choose to add photos to the back of the card too from 0-3 pictures. This is fun because you can add a lot more pictures and personalize it a little more. Even with the 3 photos that I choose to put on the back, I still had room to write a hand printed message to all the receivers of the cards. Another thing that is great about the choosing of cards is they have designs from different artists from around the world. You can also choose how you want you card to look, you can have it be a tri-fold, folded, or flat. Then when you choose which type you want, you can choose the size you want.

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The whole process of ordering, and putting the cards together couldn’t be easier. I think the hardest part was writing a personal note on all the cards. The customer service is awesome too, they are there to help answer any questions you may have. Another feature that I like is that you can have a designer review you card for free. They will make sure that all of your spelling is correct, that the placement looks good, and that your photos are not blurry. Oh and I have to mention that they have lots of other gifts and things that you can purchase too. Some items they offer include: photo books, calendars, I pad cases, announcements, stationary, notebooks, ornaments, coffee mugs, party favors and much more. I hope that you will go over and check them out. They have a code almost all the time for savings on your order.

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You can find tiny prints at http://www.tinyprints.com/, on Twitter at https://twitter.com/tinyprints, on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/tinyprints on Pinterest at http://www.pinterest.com/tiny_prints/ and Google + at https://plus.google.com/+tinyprints/posts

Disclosure: I received a code for $100 of my total order at Tiny Prints. My review is based off of my own opinions and I have not been paid to do this review or influenced in any way. As always all of my opinions stated are my own.

Kidoodle.TV Revew

 Disclosure: “I participated in a Blog Blast program on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Kidoodle.TV. I received a promotional item and a free trial as a thank you for participating.”

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As parents we have a hard time letting our children watch a lot of television. This is for several reasons, it is not good for them, we want to monitor what they are watching, we want it to be educational, we want them to be active, we want it to be age appropriate, and it can be a power struggle. Let’s face it thought, sometimes the television is necisary, and sometimes it can be a great thing for when you are trying to get things done, or your child is not feeling well.

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Kidoodle.TV Is a great thing for kids, but parents will love it too. Parents can set limits on how long they can watch the TV shows, you can set a passcode so that they can’t get into it, and you can set the shows that you want your children to watch. For kids it is great because they can watch their favorite shows, and be learning at the same time.

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Kidoodle.TV can be purchased for $4.99 a month, you can download it in the app store for your iPhone or android phones, or you can watch it online on your computer. Parents can set the content and can also visit the Parent’s Room that is password protected. Kidoodle.TV is designed for ages 0-12 years old. You can customize and monitor up to 5 users in one household. You can also have it run on multiple devices.

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Now to tell you a special part: Kidoodle.TV is giving away 10 tablets, and you can enter to win too. Use this link https://www.kidoodle.tv/ but make sure you enter by December 31st, 2013. They are also giving away free year long subscriptions to Kidoodle.TV. Oh and one last thing, you can try a it for free for a limited time only through December. I hope you will check it out.

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The children that I let use Kidoodle.TV loved it, and I just had to click on their profile and they were able to do the rest. The parents room was very helpful when it came to selecting what they could watch. I love that it was password protected too.

You can connect with Kidoodle.TV on Twitter at https://twitter.com/kidoodleTV  or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/KidoodleTV