Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Santa Paws is Coming to Town! Surprise Your Pup With Goodies from The Helpful Hound! Review and Giveaway US 12/5

by Jayedee from life in the lost world blog   You know me, I'm always on the lookout for unique items for the furkids. Rarely does a day go by that I'm not surfing the 'net or haunting the aisles in my local pet boutiques for fun and useful items for our merry little band of rescues. Recently, we were blessed with the opportunity to review some wonderful offerings from Helpful Hound, a great little shop on Etsy.

 Begun as a charity fundraising giveaway for the SPCA in Ottawa, Helpful Hound quickly became more than ever expected. Within days owner Krissy Leroux had custom requests that kept her busy for months. She continues to donate to numerous local rescue organizations, and in 2014, expanded this to include 2 English Pointer Rescues based in the USA. Krissy specializes in creating durable & unique Dog Bandanas, Collaramas, Collar bands, Tug Toys, Crate Pads, Pet Bedrolls, Coats and just about any dog item you can dream up! If you don't see exactly what you're looking for, she'll be be happy to create a custom listing. For only $5.00, your item can be customized with machine embroidery for a lasting, beautiful personal touch. Withalmost 100 embroidery colours to choose from, and several fonts available as wel, you're sure to find something to suit your furkids.

 Krissy sent the zoo crew one of her great Tug-A-Roo toys to try, a Christmas themed Bandana & Collarama and a super soft and cushy Pet Bedroll
The attention to detail on all four products is meticulous, something you would expect to find in a very high end boutique.

 The seams are even and finished beautifully, and the fabric used is high quality. The bandanas have washed like a dream with no shrinkage or fading. The Pet Bedroll, which one of our senior rescue cats has claimed as her own, seems to have gotten softer and fluffier after being run through the washer and dryer.

 Cooper, our wild child pitbull, has given the Tug-A-Roo a real workout and hasn't even phased it.

 It does get icky and saliva soaked, but I just toss it in the washer and we're good to go again. No muss, no fuss. We give Helpful Hound a solid five paw rating and hope if you're on the lookout for something a bit out of the ordinary for your furkids this holiday season, that you'll make Helpful Hound one of your shopping destinations!

Connect with Helpful Hound on Facebook|Twitter|Pinterest|Etsy so you never miss out on what's happening next!

Want to win some Helpful Hound prizes to help aid in your quest to spoil your canine this Christmas? You're in luck because the wonderful owner, Krissy, over at Helpful Hound has offered one of you lucky readers the chance to win 1. Small or Medium Size Tug-A-Roo and 1. Customized (embroidered) Bandana or Collarama in your dogs size! Pretty sweet

Just climb aboard the Rafflecopter and get those entries in for your chance to be picked as our winner!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Calm Your Soul and Lift Your Spirit with Brigantia Healing Therapies review and giveaway! US 12/5

~Written by Jayedee at Life in the Lost World~

Balance is hard for me. Whether in the physical or spiritual, I always seem to be leaning in one direction or another, seldom attaining that wonderful middle of the road state we call balance. Consequently, I'm always on the lookout for products and ideas that can help me reach and maintain harmony within myself. Aromatherapy , crystals and stones are a few of the tools I've used to help me on my journey and recently, I was blessed with the opportunity to review some wonderful items from an Etsy shop called Brigantia Herbals.

    Always all natural herbal salves, lip balms, teas, aromatherapy, body care and more. Owner, Kristine, takes the greatest care when selecting ingredients to ensure that you are getting only the best quality. She makes her products in small batches to guarantee freshness. And everything is made with great amounts of love and passion, because this is her heart and soul. Crystals and stones are cleansed and charged with music and in full moon light and then packaged and shipped in ceremonial sage.
Kristine sent me some lovely Chakra Alignment Oil, a custom blend of seven essential oils that can be used to anoint any or all of the chakras at once. It has a sweet, fruity, slightly earthy scent that is infused with herbs and crystals to amp up the energy and healing properties. Included in the package were a set of Chakra Affirmation Cards, a Chakra Stone Set that includes Garnet, Carnelian, Citrine, Green Aventurine, Blue Lace Agate, Sodalite and a Quartz Crystal Point, a Grounding Trio Set that includes Black Tourmaline, Smokey Quartz and Hematite and a lovely pink Lemurian point.

Each set of stones came packed in it's own organza bag with a bit of white sage. I was struck, as I always am, at the amount of heat a crystal can generate.

The interior of the shipping container was noticeably warmer than the ambient temperature when I opened it. Some Native Americans believe that stones and crystals are living entities, and when I feel their individual warmth, I find that easy to believe. Brigantia Herbal herbals has so many fascinating offerings, it was hard for me to know where to look first. From smudge sets and stones to teas, salves and even pet charms, this thoughtful unique collection is sure to contain what you're looking for.

Connect with Brigantia Healing Therapies on Facebook |Twitter|Etsy so you never miss a thing when it comes to the latest news and shop additions!

Want to win your chance to peek around Brigantia Healing Therapies and get some free items? The lovely proprietress, Kristine, has generously offered one of you lucky ducks the chance to win any item of your choice, with a product maximum of $20, from her shop. How cool is that? I sure do envy whoever wins this one!

Just get your entries in on the Rafflecopter form below and stay tuned to see if you've been chosen as our winner!

Namaste. a Rafflecopter giveaway

Stay Simple and Classy This Holiday Season with Jewelry from Paz Happy Creations! Review and Giveaway! US 12/5

I can't ever remember a time when I didn't love jewelry. Ever since I was a kid I've poured over the For Her section of store brochures and dreamed of owning some of the lovely pieces from within. I never cared much for the more expensive pieces I saw advertised and hardly gave anything Gold the time of day..no, I loved the simple things. Silver pendants on long chains, Swarovski Crystals in place of diamonds, birthstone Jewelry instead of overly populated gemstone pieces. Even now, in my adult years, my tastes still linger on such things. The simpler the piece the happier I am.

When I was given the opportunity to work with Paz Happy Creations to include some of their gorgeous, yet beautifully simplistic, designs I was over the moon. There wasn't a gaudy, or overly done piece in the entire place!

Check out what Erin, the talent behind Paz Happy Creations, has to say about the inspiration behind her work, the Paz Happy philosophy and what she does when she's not hard at work crafting new pieces to offer in her shop!

"My name is Erin and I love to create. I make handcrafted jewelry, handblown glass paperweights and original art from my own insanely happy, deeply nostalgic, manically creative mind. This world is a beautiful, moldable paradise. Choose your medium and never stop creating your magic and inviting others into your unique, special world. The Paz Happy philosophy is all about self empowerment and inner creativity. 

Paz Happy Creations is a place for me to sell my handcrafted jewelry, glass, and original art. Every item listed in my Etsy shop is like a physical manifestation of who I am, and I am very grateful to have a mode to share that with you. Please browse my creations taking note that I put great care and love into each and every piece that I make. I am a one woman show and I happily spend my time working on my special creations. 

When I am not creating jewelry or glass, I am usually dancing/performing and teaching dance. I recently graduated from a liberal arts college where I studied dance and psychology and my love for movement and human energy strongly influences my approach to crafting and creating tangible products." 

When I was offered the chance to review a Light Blue Larimar Quartz Copper Boho Ring and Silver Plated Turquoise Hamsa Necklace for the For Her section of our Holiday Gift Guide I was thrilled. Erin couldn't have picked a more fabulous duo to be featured.

Erin was able to custom size the Blue Larimar Ring for me (I inherited some pretty weird, stumpy, fingers from my Grandmothers side of the family) and the overall result was wonderful. Take a look at how lovely it is. Of course, nothing can do it justice until you see it in person but if the picture is any indication this ring is perfection in itself.

I just adore how the Copper Wire sets off the Blue Larimar! Not only does the Larimar Quartz match my eyes, that's just an added bonus, but it also gives this particular the simple and sweet look that I often look for in my jewelry. Did I mention that Erin can make this particular ring in sizes 3-15? I'll admit to it, finally, that I'm a size 12 so when I read her sizing options I was ecstatic. It's so hard to find a ring that fits properly but I'm pleased to say that I've worn this one many times and without an ounce of discomfort or worry that it would come off at any time. It's the perfect gift for her or to tuck away into a stocking for your favorite jewelry enthusiast.

If you're a fan of mindful goodies then the Turquoise Hamsa necklace is definitely for you. 

Again, I just adore the simplicity of another Paz Happy piece. The Chinese Turquoise really sets off the silver, as you can tell from my picture. As an added bonus it even matches my ring. The chain measures 20-22 inches and is adjustable to your taste. It hangs just above the bust line and makes for the perfect addition to any outfit. You can't go wrong with a charm that reminds you that your spirit is safe and loved. It really is another perfect piece for our For Her section of the Holiday Gift Guide!

If you'd like to keep in touch with Paz Happy Creations and ensure that you don't miss the latest news on what they have going on then connect with them on Facebook|Twitter|Instagram|Etsy

I bet you wonderful fans are just itching to know if I'm going to announce a giveaway..you just can't stand the anticipation that's eating you up as you wonder if you'll be able to get a chance to win these two gorgeous items..and I'm pleased to tell you that YES, you absolutely will get your chance! Erin has very generously offered to have one of you luckies win these two lovely items!

Just fill out the easy entries on the Rafflecopter form below and stay tuned to see if you've been chosen! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Make Nap Time Fun with Pillow Bed Covers from Creative Chickie! US 12/4

I guess I shouldn't admit this openly in a blog post since it's such a controversial topic but I'm a proud co-sleeper. Every night for the last 4 years I have let my daughters sleep in bed with me. I never bought a crib or a bassinet or even a pack-n-play during either of my pregnancies because the idea that my bebe's would sleep anywhere else but beside me was never even a passing thought. Each night before bed I'd dress them in the most adorable footed jammies or sack sleepers and snuggled up next to me, in the crook of my arm, they would stay, all night long. I never rolled onto either of them. They never rolled anywhere but over to nurse. Now, they're 4 and 2. Now, they don't roll anywhere. They climb, they jump, they bounce, they sneak or they tiptoe.

It was about the time they started to sleep sideways, upside down, and on top of me that I decided it was time to consider kicking them out of my bed and into their own. I still wake up twice a night to nurse a toddler and again when they rise with the sun so being woken up with to a foot in my mouth in addition wasn't something I was going to tolerate..except I did. For the past 6 months since I first decided to kick the little heathens out of my bed I've clung to whatever excuse I could to keep them with me. They're still too young to sleep alone. They're scared of the dark. They need me. It's easier to nurse my toddler if she's in bed with me, etc. Well, now, all these months later I've finally had enough (maybe) and thanks to Creative Chickie and their adorable Pillow Bed Covers I can finally give them the boot. Well, during nap time at least.

"The designers for CreativeChickie are myself and my 2 daughters, ages 18 & 16.  I do the sewing and they do the crocheting and knitting. We're a home-based business where we create and design together....and my husband never complains about our "creative chaos."

I wish I had know about PIllow Beds when my girls were younger!  They would have been put to good use on sleepovers, going to Grandma and Grandpa's, camping, school, movie watching and just lounging around home.  The possibilities of their use are endless, I've even had a Relaxation Clinic overseas order them for her classes. Our Pillow  Beds are made to hold 4 pillows and have sham-style closures so that the pillows can be removed and the cover washed.  They are offered in 2 sizes:  Standard size and Queen size.  

Approximate measurements:
Standard: 25" x 70", Queen: 29" x 70".  

Our knitted and crocheted Scarves, Cowls are each handmade by my daughters and most of the time are One of a Kind pieces.  They sometimes follow a pattern and other times design a pattern as they create a new accessory piece. They enjoy working with different weights and textures of yarn and lots of different colors!"

Take a look at this enchanting Princess Pillow Bed Cover I was able to review! Isn't the print just lovely!

Sophia was absolutely over the moon when I laid this down for her at nap time for the first time and she saw some of her favorite Disney Princesses on the cover. Being able to hang out with Tiana, Cinderella and Rapunzel were the best incentive I've could have have given her to lay down and take a nap, ever! I loved listening to her name off each princess while I cuddled her younger sister up in bed with me. Not long after she started telling me the stories behind each princess I realized that she had trailed off and had fallen asleep. In record time!

Each of Creative Chickie's Standard Size Pillow Bed Covers, like the one I was sent, is crafted out of 100% Cotton and will fit 4 standard size pillows. It was so easy, once I went out and purchased the pillows, to assemble. My Girls flocked to it instantly! Thanks to the Sham-like closures inserting the pillows was a snap and they fully hide the whites of the pillows within for an adorable finished look. I was also pleased with the washing aspect of the cover. Thanks to the sham-like closures not only is inserting the pillows easy as pie but it's just as easy to remove them and toss the cover in the washer when it gets dirty. With the dirt and cat hair that my kids manage to attract I must say that that is one of my favorite features about Creative Chickie Pillow Bed Covers. There's absolutely no fuss and no muss. No tools, tutorials or instructions needed! They even have Pillow Bed Covers for boys too!

Need extra space for guests, furniture or just want to conserve precious space in a small room? The ingenious design of the pillow bed makes it super easy to fold up neatly and store in even the smallest of places. Lynelle even includes a pretty ribbon to help keep it securely folded!
See how cute the Owl print Pillow Bed converts into a neat little package? Pretty neat! 

Connect with Creative Chickie on Facebook|Etsy and make sure you never miss out on the latest and greatest being churned out from this wonderful family of creative chickies! 

How would you like to make off with a Pillow Bed Cover of your very own? Fill out the Rafflecopter form below and you're all set cause Creative Chickie has generously offered one of you lucky readers the chance to win one Standard Size Pillow Bed Cover of your choice! *Pillows Not Included*

Good luck and don't forget to check out more Holiday Gift Guide offerings going live every day!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Beach Goers Will Be Jelly When You Show Up with Maggie Ann Totes! #HolidayGiftGuide Review and #Giveaway US 12/1

When I became a Mom 4 years ago I had no idea how drastically my life was about to change. I mean, sure, I knew there would be some changes I'd have to make but just how drastic those changes would be I had no idea. There are so many things I miss from my days as a free woman but one of the things I miss most has got to be being able to reach into my purse and not bring it back out again without a handful of baby wipes, miscellaneous children's toys or baggies of crushed snacks. I miss being able to have my own purse again. I MISS being able to carry MY stuff in MY purse. For 4 years I've carried nothing of my own with me but the treasures of infants and toddlers. Well, no more!

Literally, no more. I was actually given the opportunity recently to include Maggie Ann's in our For Her section of our Gift Guide and was sent 2 of their Totes for review! Goodbye, Mommy Bag. Hello, trendy, Mom's only, Totes! First up is this gorgeous Nautical Navy and White Striped Beach Tote with matching Navy Straps. Not only is this a classic look to sport while taking a day trip to our Florida beaches but it's also great for day to day activity and overnight trips. I was pleasantly surprised when I packed for our last beach trip and found that I could pack my swim suit, 3 beach towels, sunscreen for us fair skinned ladies and my keys/wallet into just this one bag. I was impressed to see, also, that there was room for more! Size certainly isn't an issue with this tote and I'm happy to say I didn't have to sacrifice cuteness for size either like other bags.

One of my favorite things about these particular totes are is the fabric they're made of. Each one is crafted from durable, outdoor, fabric that repels any dirt or water, making it a snap to clean. So, trips to the beach or even the playground for a play date are ideal since you don't have to worry so much about staining.

The Nautical Navy Tote measures 16" tall and 24" wide and has a diameter of 5 1/2". Told ya it was HUGE!

I just love that Navy color with the white, don't you?

The second Maggie Ann Tote I was sent for review is this adorable Zippered Nautical Navy Anchor design. Again, I love the Navy on White with matching Navy Stripes. If you look closely you can even see the soft penciled Navy designs in the background of the fabric! This is another bag that would be perfect for a day at the beach or in my case, the Natural Springs, we have in several different parts of the state. I'm pretty happy that there's also an inside pocket with zipper where I can keep my keys and sunglasses while I'm splashing around or walking the beach. Did I mention that the inside of the bag is lined with polyurethane so throwing your wet towels and/or suits inside after use is not only convenient but it also won't ruin your new favorite bag. Measuring 24 x 16 in height and 5" in diameter, the Nautical Anchor Tote is large enough to hold 3 of my families towels, a couple of swimsuits, my personal belongings and sunscreen to keep us irish folks from turning crispy. Don't believe me? Stuff in your beach gear and see for yourself! One thing is for sure, though, the other ladies are sure to be jealous when they see you arrive on scene with this adorable tote.

Here's a little bit about the lovely sister-duo behind Maggie Ann's:

"When my sister Linda and I were girls,  Mom sewed stylish clothes for our Barbie Dolls.  As we founded Maggie Ann's, our desire was to create products with Mom's ideals of encompassing style, usefulness and quality in mind.

I (Nancy) work on designing, marketing, photographing and shipping here in St. Paul, Minnesota (I have Diane and Char sew for me presently).  Linda  works on designing, sewing, photographing and shipping from her home in Mason City, Iowa.  When I sew, I use Mom's 1953 Singer and it still works like a dream! From selecting fabric to sewing to wrapping your product for shipping, we strive to keep Mom's ideals alive and well. 

A quality product  and great customer service is important to us. We want you to love our products as much as we love creating them for you! We hope you'll be a repeat customer and mention Maggie Ann's to your friends. "

How great is it to find a team of sisters who draw inspiration from a childhood that was made memorable by a Mother's love for her daughters and her knack for style?

You can connect with Maggie Ann's on Etsy|Facebook|Twitter. Be sure to stop on by and keep yourself up to date with the latest and greatest!

In keeping with the spirit of the holiday season Maggie Ann's would like to offer all you great readers a a discount of 15% off items over $25 when using coupon code:  MASAVE15. In addition, and here's your favorite part, they would also like to offer you lucky readers the chance to win a Maggie Ann's Tote of your very own by giving away 2 bags (shown below) to one winner each! 

To clarify, there will be two winners chosen at the end of the giveaway: one winner will win one design and the 2nd will win the other. Winners design is sent at random for fairness! 

So, get those entries in and stay tuned to see if you've been chosen as one of our lucky duck winners! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

2014 Holiday Gift Guide

Welcome to our 2014 Holiday Gift Guide! We have teamed up with Naturally Frugalicious, again this year, to offer up a rather fabulous selection of great gift ideas for the season. The great brands and talented artisans who have so generously partnered with this year have helped us to create a really wonderful holiday gift guide.

2014 Holiday Gift Guide

Gifts for Him • Gifts for Her • Gifts for Teens
Gifts for Kids • Gifts for Toddlers & Babies • Geekery Gifts
Gifts for the Home • Gifts for the Kitchen • Gifts for Wine & Spirits Lovers
Mindful Gifts • Gifts for Pets • Gifts for the Season

2014 Holiday Gift Guide

In the upcoming weeks, we will be sharing our featured brands, artisans, shops and favorite gift ideas, along with some terrific giveaways. Below is a list of all of our fabulous sponsoring brands and artisans for this year’s Holiday Gift Guide! As our sections and featured posts go live, clicking on the brand’s name will take you to section of the gift guide in which they are listed. Be sure to check them out to get some really great holiday gift ideas just in time for the holiday gift buying season. And while you are here, enter to win some fabulous prizes that you can give as gifts.

2014 Holiday Gift Guide Brands & Artisans

2014 Holiday Gift Guide Brands & Artisans
LSTN Hallmark Blue Orange Games
Indieflix Portable North Pole slice
Newman's Own Organics Bob's Red Mill AZ Wine Group
Ubooly Del Sol Sushi Quik
Fisher Kids Haywire Group Ornaments with Love
Cariloha Mark Poulin essio
The Cotton Cult Organic India Hollow Book Co.
STORMp3 Jack Franklin The Geekerie
Nibblr Heidi's Sweet Shoppe Polder's Old World Market
Corckcicle Toilettree Products Play on Patterns
Bubble Dream Handmade Soaps Peachy Keen Perfume Love Your Face
Blue Steel Ardente Gourmet Stirrer Valentia Skincare
ARIA Guinness The 1759 Menu
Amarula Wines of Portugal Partida Tequila
Marchesi de' Frescobaldi Downton Abbey Whitehall Lane
VAT19 Simply Made Greetings Rugs USA
YouCopia Nocciolata Maggie Ann's
Kidecals Whitehall farm The Spice Lab
UStar Novels Guilty Geeks Jade Yoga
Kottage Kreations EcoCycled Exquisite Candles
RK's Embroidery Boutique BYOImagination Exaltation
Lady Herndon Aurorae NT Handmade
Amy K. Jewels The Gift of Art by Nikki Jinxy Jewels
Anastasia's Artifacts Therafit Happy Everything Else
Jewell Ray Menagerie Magique Creative Chickie
Born on Bonn Paz Happy Creations Trojecek Farms
Bella Boutique Candy Cottage Mine by Design
Clayilicious Fiber Art Accents Posies in my Pocket
TealKat Creations Cedar Creek Soaps Gretchen's Apothecary
Brigantia Herbals Joie Joelle Creations Cottage by the Sea
Janiebee.com True Callings Copycat Yoga
Evanger's Helpful Hound Newman's Own Organics Pet
The Registry Less Traveled My Fabulous Puppy Sniff it Out
A Timeless Impression Winestone Birdhouses Natural Serenity
Tbedding   Colorific Crayons