19 November 2017

Give Your Immune System a Boost with Culturelle Probiotics - Review

Disclosure:  This is a sponsored review for Culturelle on behalf of Smiley360.  All opinions are 100% my own.

Tis' the season for keeping germs away!  During cold and flu season it is important to safeguard yourself and your family from getting sick.  Did you know that 70% of your immune system resides in your digestive tract?  Culturelle prides itself on it's products that cater to your health and wellness.  Culturelle has products for everyone in your family, including children and infants!  It is also the #1 pharmacist recommended brand and is dairy-free, gluten-free, and sugar-free.

Culturelle's Probiotics Pro-well line of products contain Lactobacillus GG, the leading researched probiotic.  Their Pro-well Health and Wellness capsules contain 15 billion live active cultures!  These capsules help maintain the healthy balance of good bacteria within your gut.  

Culturelle Probiotics Pro-well Immune + Energy contains 20 single serve packets so that you can take your dose of wellness on the go!  With a blend of Vitamin C and energizing B vitamins you will be able to kick start your day.  Simply mix one packet of Fresh Citrus Culturelle Immune + Energy with 8 oz. or more of water.  As a busy mom always on the go I love these handy packets to take with me to work or to keep in my purse for a tasty boost to my water.

If you're like me and want to cover all of your bases with one product than Culturelle Probiotics Pro-well 3-in-1 Complete is your answer!  This daily capsule helps promote heart health, balances your digestive system, and supports your immune system.  This product contains Omega-3 fatty acids which help cardiovascular function.  This product also contains Lactobacillus GG.  

Staying one step ahead of germs is always my goal during cold and flu season.  What I love about Culturelle's Probiotic products is how easy they are to implement into your daily routine.  I have noticed as I've gotten older that my digestive system seems to be slowing down.  My metabolism isn't all what it used to be and my immune system could use a boost every now and then.  After trying Culturelle's products I have started to notice that I don't feel so weighed down after eating.  I have yet to get sick this season (knock on wood!) and I think Culturelle's products are going to help me keep it that way.  It's interesting because I read an article not too long ago that talked about a majority of health issues being traced back to the gut.  I believe that Culturelle's line of products help people achieve better health and wellness and I am happy to have had this chance to try them for myself and share them with you guys.  

If you are interested in trying Culturelle's line of Pro-well products you can find a coupon that will save you $5 off here.  There is also a coupon for $5 off Culturelle Kids!

You can also find Culturelle on Facebook and Twitter


18 November 2017

Aging Parent Caregiving Tips for Busy Moms

As our parents age there are different obstacles that must be navigated.  Discussions surrounding living arrangements and care are often brought up.  Some people may decide to go with live-in care and others decide to become the primary caregiver for their loved ones.  If you are a busy mom you may be feeling overwhelmed at times trying to juggle the many roles you have in your daily life.  The following are tips to help busy moms who are also the caregiver of their aging parent.

Take Time for Yourself

It can often be too easy to forget about your own needs, especially as a mom.  Add on the role of caregiver to an aging parent and this task seems nearly impossible for many.  Finding some personal time you can set aside each week that is dedicated to you and your needs can help prevent burnout and will help you feel recharged.  Go out to coffee or to a restaurant with friends, join a book club, start a garden, or go see a movie.  It is important to remember that first you must take care of yourself if you want to give the best possible care to others.

Don't Be Afraid to Ask for Help

Going along with taking time for yourself, it is important that you ask for help if needed.  While being a super mom is a worthwhile goal, sometimes even super moms need a helping hand!  Family members you trust to help provide care can be a great asset to call on when you need a break.  There are also many great agencies such as a dementia home care agency within your community that have caregivers that will provide in home care.  These agencies do background checks and can place the appropriately trained caregiver with your loved one.

Connect with Others

Another way that you can prevent caregiver burnout is by connecting with others within your community.  You could join a local support group for other parents who are also primary caregivers of an aging loved one.  It may be nice to also have someone to talk to, such a counselor.  The goal is to build up your support network so that you can truly feel supported in your role.  This in turn will give you more connections to resources that may be appropriate for your needs and can also give you a listening ear.  Last but not least, remember to give yourself a pat on the back!  Self-acknowledgement can often times be as powerful and outside acknowledgement.


15 November 2017

Top 10 Things For Improving Your Child's Birthday Party

Nobody wants their children to not enjoy their birthday parties.  That is why so many parents spend lots of money to try to ensure that their children have the best birthday parties possible.   The problem with that is if you aren't sure what to do to make the birthday part the most memorable and the best, then you will just end up wasting your money.  The following are 10 top things you should look at to help improve your child's birthday party.  

Give Them The Kind Of Party They Want

Depending on how old your child is, they will usually adapt to whatever you do with their birthday party.  However, older children won't be as adaptable since they will have a better idea of the kind of party they want.  We recommend you give your child the kind of party they want.  That doesn't mean catering to every single whim about their party or overindulging them. 

Ask them about what they want for their party.  It is easier to deal with younger children quite often since they may only want to have a certain gift or specific theme.  Incorporating that into a party is easy to do, but older children may ask for a lot more than that.  You should think about what you realistically can include from what their wishes are and trying catering as much as possible to them.

Consider hosting the party at a fun center such as Jumper's Jungle.  Many party venues provide clean up, decorations, tableware, and even food!  This creates a fun party with less stress for the parents.  

Send Out Great Invitations  

Party invitations are an absolute must to remind everybody that the party is going to be occurring and that it will be a great one.  It was found by Parents Magazine that paper invitations are still used by 73% of parents and that can serve as a physical reminder to all of your guests.  However, the digital age has been embraced by 34% of parent show send electronic invitations out. 

The kind of invitation that you send out is going to vary depending on who you will be inviting.  Younger children tend to like inviting everyone in their class, and it can be easier sending a paper invitation with children.  However, if you are planning a smaller party with individuals you know well already, then your best option might be to send an electronic invitation.  

No matter what kind of invitation method you use, you will need to make sure that it is memorable.  If your party is going to have a theme, then you should incorporate it into your invitations.  You should also include starting and ending times for your party to provide you with some peace of mind while planning the event. 

Look At Who Will Be Coming To Your Party

If you are having a party for a young child, there might be some parents who aren't comfortable with just dropping off their child at a party and them coming back later to pick them up.  That is why you need to think about who actually will be coming to your party. We recommend that you think about having a separate where adults can be away from the children and still enjoy the party.

The party's adult section will need to have the appropriate food for adults.  The children's section of your party will tend to be full of endless games and be busier.  If you can cater to everyone it will help to ensure that everyone has fond memories of the party. 

Have A Delicious Cake

No birthday party is complete without a cake and it needs to be a memorable one.  The cake is that one party detail that everyone will notice and frequently is the centerpiece of a party.  It isn't necessary to spend lots of  money at the most expensive bakery to get the best cake.  Just having a unique cake that goes with the party's them will usually be sufficient.  Of course, you have to make sure the cake does taste good so that it isn't remembered for all of the wrong reasons.

Make Sure To Have Games

With a kid's party one thing you need to keep in mind is they have more energy compared to adults.  What that means is that they need to be kept entertained and busy.  Older children can tend to entertain themselves much better compared to younger children, you for them it might not need to plan games in advance for the party.  However, with younger kids, different games should be planned that are both memorable and fun.

Games are an excellent way of giving kids an outlet for all of their energy and letting them burn the sugar off from all the birthday cake they just ate.  You will of course all need to make sure everybody is having fun and stays civil.        

Goodie Bags

Although your child will be the star of his birthday party, one way to appease everyone is to give something to everybody who comes.  It isn't necessary for goodie bags to cost lots of money and they are also an easy and fast way of making everybody feel special.  Goodie bags are of course usually more important with a younger child than an older one, since older kids have a better understanding that a party is about one individual.  

Have Some Other Food

One great way to keep everyone happy is to feed them.  Although it important having fun snacks and cake, you might also want to have some other food as well.  If here will be adults, you will want to have something more substantial than just cupcakes.  That doesn't mean a big lunch needs to be served since party foods will be perfectly fine. 

Have Some Fun Music

Many parents tend to forget to plan music for a birthday party.  Older kids can put their own music on so you won't need to worry about it, however younger kids may not be able to do this on their own.  We recommend that you take the time to get a playlist of music created for your birthday party.

The songs included in your playlist should be easy and fun to listen to.  It is much easier if you have a playlist since you won't need to worry about constantly changing the music.  If the party has a theme, you should make sure the music aligns with its theme.   

Consider Decorations

Party decorations are important, especially if you have a theme you are working with.  You can make our party cups look like something that goes with your theme or if you have a mainstream them you should be able to easily buy decorations.  Be create with your decorations and try and think of ways to get creative with general party decorations. A really good example would be using green streamers in a jungle themed party for the vines.  

Think About When You Want To Open Presents

Gifts are frequently the highlight of a birthday party, but it is important to think about when to open them.  A majority of parents let their children open their presents during their party, but that might not be the best option always.  If there are many small children at a birthday party, if gifts are open during the party if could cause temper tantrums and problems. Older kids won't have that problem usually, but you should be aware it still is possible. 

If you would like to avoid the problem of small children potentially throwing temper tantrums, you can choose to open gifts after the party is over. If you do decide to do that, you will need to let your child know or they might be the one who throws a tantrum.

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Disclosure:  This is a contributed post.