Holiday Gift Picks for Kids – Introducing “Show and Tell With Deb & Lisa” Video Series

I’m so excited to share today’s post with you!

Over the past year I’ve had some wonderful opportunities to check out great toys, books, electronics, gifts, clothes, events and activities at various blogging events which I’ve shared with you here at The Harried Mom. At these events I would always run into my friend Lisa Pisano from Mom A La Mode.

I love hanging out with Lisa. Why?  Because we’re two like-minded blogging moms who love to talk about products and our experiences. We figured if we liked talking about these things together, you might too and we’ve created a new series that we hope you’ll find both informative and entertaining.

So I’m proud to introduce you to “Show and Tell With Deb & Lisa” our new monthly vlog series that gives you the scoop on the latest in toys, trends and fun from two bloggers with an all access-pass to what’s hot and happening!

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For our inaugural episode we’re getting into the holiday spirit with a holiday gift guide for kids. Our picks are focused on items for both boys and girls and ranging in age from pre-K thru elementary school.

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It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas – #NorthpoleFun {#shop}

This shop has been compensated by #CollectiveBias, Inc. and its advertiser.
All opinions are mine alone. #NorthpoleFun

‘Twas the month before Christmas and all through my house, both my kidlets were stirring wondering “when the heck will Santa be here?!”

I think the kidlets were ready for the holiday season to start the moment they took off their costumes and ate their last piece of candy! I’ll admit, I couldn’t wait for it either! Christmastime my favorite time of year and I am totally into the celebration!

I mail out my holiday cards early enough that it’s the first card most of my friends get for the season. I put up our tree and decorations the day after Thanksgiving and keep them out all the way thru New Year’s.  I buy crazy amounts of holiday wrapping paper and spend hours debating what bows, ribbons and tags I’ll use for each gift.   I even take the kidlets on weekly trips around our neighborhood to check out all the pretty lights and Christmas displays.

THM-Northpole-Hallmark-Communicator-Book-SnowflakeSo of course I wanted to get a jump-start on this holiday season, so I picked up some Northpole items for the kidlets. Northpole is a new line of keepsake toys, gifts and party items from Hallmark that are inspired by Santa’s magical home and are available now at Walmart.Continue reading ⇒

VTech InnoTab Max Review – A Tablet for the Kids!

Disclosure: I was provided with a VTech® InnoTab® MAX in order to facilitate this review.
All opinions are my very own.

My kidlets totally take after me and The Hubs when it comes to trying out new tech products. You should see how excited they get when a new tech toy arrives for them to actually try out! One of their recent favs has been the Kidzoom® Smartwatch from Vtech (which I wrote about here), the two of them have fought over since we got it this summer.

THM-InnoTab-Max-Vtech-Review-TabletSo when the InnoTab MAX showed up on our doorstep earlier this month, they were psyched to finally have their very own tablet device instead of having to borrow mom and dad’s to play on.  It might just be the perfect gift for the tech/gadget loving kid on your holiday list!

The InnoTab MAX by VTech is a multi-media learning tablet for children aged 3-9 that combines educational games and creative activities.

I like that it’s built to grow along with my child.  It combines VTech’s expert-supported library of cartridges, software and apps with carefully selected educational Android apps for fun and educational learning.

This tablet features a large (7 inch) high-resolution touch screen that allows kids to either use their fingers or the included stylus to navigate around.  It has a useful handle for kids to tote the tablet around and comes with a detachable cover/stand which helps makes it durable to tough wear and tear by kids.

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‘Tis the Season – The Sweet Smell of Scents #FebrezeHoliday

This is a sponsored post written on behalf of SheSpeaks and Febreze.
All opinions expressed are 100% honest and my own.

Though it wasn’t even Halloween, let alone Thanksgiving, it was already beginning to look a lot like Christmas last week when these showed up in my mailbox….

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But I don’t mind much because Christmas is my favorite holiday. I’m all about the spirit and feeling of the holiday –family, friends, love, laughter and happiness.

Every time this time of year rolls around, I’m transformed back into a little kid. I get so excited and I can’t wait for the celebration to begin!

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Christmas Countdown – Last Minute Gift Ideas for Kids

We’re less than one week away from Christmas!  Are you done gift shopping yet?  Thankfully I’m almost done, I have just a few small stocking stuffer items left to get and then let the wrapping in Santa’s Workshop (aka our home office) begin! I’ve talked to a few friends who said they haven’t even started yet and are planning on a marathon shopping trip this weekend.  Talk about cutting it close!

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Holiday Gift Ideas – What To Give Your Child’s Teacher??

Are you like me this time of year? I’m always conflicted as to what to give my kidlets teachers for the holiday.

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To me, a child’s teacher is one of the most important people in their lives, aside from their family. And a good teacher will go that extra mile to make sure that a child gets a proper and fulfilling education. Both my kidlets have been fortunate to have such wonderful and deeply caring teachers. My kidlets love going to school because their teachers make it a fun, safe and inviting place to be! I want to show them just how much they are appreciated by the kidlets, The Hubs and I, but finding just the right gift is always so hard.

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‘Tis The Season To Be…..

The lyrics to “Deck the Halls” may say ‘Tis the season to be jolly - but to me, it’s more like  ‘Tis the season to be stressed!  I don’t know why, but I always feel so rushed this time of year, like everyone is on some mad dash to get to thru the holiday and onto the New Year.

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Family Friendly Video Games: LEGO Legends of CHIMA: Laval’s Journey Review

My son loves playing games – card ones, board ones and, of course, video ones.  After hounding The Hubs and I for more than a year, we him got a Nintendo 3DS XL for his birthday this past summer.  Between that hand-held system and our more traditional XBOX360, my boy is becoming quite the gamer.  However, since he’s only six, The Hubs and I are pretty picky when it comes to games we buy and let him play, making sure that they are age-appropriate.  Over the next few weeks I’ll feature reviews of family friendly games that we like and would also make good gifts for the younger video gamer on your holiday list.

First up is LEGO® Legends of CHIMA™: Laval’s Journey from Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and based on the popular animated series.  We got a chance to review the Nintendo 3DS version.

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What’s On Your List? #HotToys13

Ever since I was a kid I’ve been a list-maker.  I’m sure it’s some sort of OCD manifestation, but I make lists for just about everything in my life — daily to-do lists, what phone calls I need to make, emails to send/reply to, errands I need to run, groceries to buy — you get the idea.  I think that my obsessive list behavior is rubbing off on my kidlets because they’ve already made out their Christmas lists.

THM_HotToys13_ListPage One of My Son’s Christmas List

I remember being my kidlets’ age and sitting at the kitchen table writing out my own Christmas wish list. I wrote out my list diligently, making sure to print neatly and clearly so Santa would have no question about what I wanted.  I can still remember the feeling of sheer joy when I was five and unwrapped my Dorothy Hamill Doll & Skating Rink  I loved that doll!

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Track Santa’s Journey From The North Pole To Your Ho-Ho-Home…

The biggest day of the year for Santa is quickly approaching! My kidlets are excited and have asked me tons of questions asking how Santa Claus delivers presents to all the little boys and girls all over the world in time for Christmas morning. How on Earth (literally) can he do it….and now I can show them!

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Google’s Santa Tracker site has all sorts of goodies for kids who wonder how Santa does it all! At the center of the site is a countdown clock that is ticking off the seconds to jolly old St. Nick’s scheduled departure on from the North Pole and begins his annual journey to deliver gifts around the world. Starting on Christmas Eve, you can log on and actually track Santa’s journey via a world map!

Until then, if you visit the site you can explore Santa’s village and even play several fun games that involve elves, sleighs and gifts.  The best part is that you can have an online chat with Santa Claus himself. He even makes personal phone call to any North American phone number between the hours of 8 am and 9 pm daily! He also can send personal messages on Google+ and email 24 hours a day. Just log onto www.sendacallfromsanta.com and you can be “in touch” with Santa.

Who knew that Santa was so hi-tech?! I guess with as many presents to wrap and deliver in one night he needs to be.

Now it’s your turn to share.  What will you be leaving out for Santa & his reindeer on Christmas Eve?