Sustainable Toys From @Tegu Create an Imaginative Environment #GivingGreen #NGGiftGuide

 Sometimes I run across a toy that I just absolutely love as soon as I see it. Recently I saw this wooden car on one of my favorite sites, Tegu, and had to have it for my son! Not only is it a working car, it's made out of magnetic wooden blocks and can be configured different ways. How awesome is that?

Tegu is a magnetic wooden block company based out of Honduras that had the vision of a for-profit business that would effect the lives of Hondurans. Their name is derived from the city their blocks are manufactured in. From the fully independent toy company they are to the partnership they've created with local schools, Tegu is changing employment standards in Central America for the better.

Beautifully Crafted Wooden Blocks
The wood that creates these beautiful blocks is hand picked by local Honduran cooperatives who are certified by the Forest Stewardship Counsel. The FSC processes facilitate the forest's natural regeneration cycle. By being selective with what trees are cut down they can make sure that the forest has time to replenish and regrow before cutting more trees down.

The magical combination of Honduran hardwood and magnets creates an imaginative tool for children to learn and expand their abilities to play and create. The "click-clack" sound of two Tegu blocks coming together ignites new possibilities and allows children to push and pull new ideas together over and over.

The Hatch
Our Hatch car from Tegu includes 10 classic Tegu magnetic wooden blocks and a super awesome compact canopy to create the look of a classic car. With the included wheels, this car really moves! And can be used to create more than just a car if wanted.

As soon as my son took the blocks out of the package he was putting them together like he'd done it a hundred times. But when he wanted to make the car just like it was on the box, he asked Daddy for help. Together they figured it out and in no time they were racing their car down the sidewalk.

Creative Exploration
Tegu not only has these awesome cars, they also have an extensive selection of amazing block sets. From pocket versions that are easy to take in your day bag to full sets perfect for the classroom, there's a Tegu block set for everyone.

I love the variety. And that doesn't stop with the sizes of the sets. The sets also come in different colors. The perfect classic look of the Natural colors is a great way to show off the gorgeous beauty of this Honduran hardwood. Like the look of the classic wood but want something a bit richer? Check out the Mahogany stained sets. Simple and elegant but still just as durable and fun as the Natural sets.

Need a little color in your life? Well there's room for that with the beautiful blues, oranges, grays and greens of the Nelson sets and the more natural greens and browns of the Jungle sets.

Tegu offers a great selection of blocks and cars that are perfect for this gift giving season! Head on over to the Tegu website to check out the vast selection of blocks available and fall in love with the company just like I have.

Want to keep up with the latest Tegu has to offer? Like Tegu on Facebook or follow them on twitter at @Tegu.

Tegu is a proud sponsor of the Noise Girls Winter Gift Guide giveaway. Head on over to see great ideas for you and your family this Winter season.

Head back to enter to win one of three amazing prize packages featured in this giveaway, one of which includes the winners choice of a Hatch or Dart Tegu car. And make sure to check out our complete Winter Gift Guide for ideas on what to give this holiday season.

The Perfect Gifts from @KnockKnock and Clump-O-Lump #NGGiftGuide

 This holiday season I've found just about the coolest online store ever. And it has everything you need for this upcoming gift giving season. I've found something for everyone on my list and much more. What's this awesome store you ask? Well... it's Knock Knock!

Knock Knock was founded in 2002 by Jen Bilik with the mission of creating witty, design-driven gift products and books, along with anything else that might strike the Knock Knock fancy.

Their products aspire to bring humor, function, organization, and aesthetics to everyday life. And they believe that people are intelligent enough to appreciate wit, wordplay, and conceptual thought. Whether Knock Knock is producing sticky notes or a volume of thoroughly researched nonfiction, they strive not to dumb down as they create.

I was lucky enough to check out two of their products and I have to say... I'll be back for more!

Meet Shark-O the Shark. He's a member of the Clump-O-Lump family and is a pretty awesome guy. Not only is he super plush and cuddly, he can also come apart and be dissected with the pull of a zipper! And he's quickly become a favorite amongst my kids.

Clump-O-Lumps are the perfect gifts for your kids this year. Not only are they a great way to use our imagination, you can also combine different Clump-O-Lumps to create new animals. What do you get when you cross a shark and a squid? A squark!

There are 6 members of the Clump-O-Lump family:
  • Tig-O the Tiger
  • Frog-O the Frog
  • Shark-O the Shark
  • Bee-O the Bee
  • Squid-O the Squid
  • Bird-O the Bird
And that's not all! For a limited time you can choose from the Clump-O-Lumped bunch and receive a mixed up buddy of your own!

Knock-Knock not only sells these loveable Clump-O-Lumps, they alsomake some pretty awesome things. SO many awesome things that I had a hard time deciding what I really needed to try out. But as soon as I saw it I knew I needed it... this Personal Library Kit is not only a throwback to checking out books before the time of computers but also makes borrowing books a lot more fun!

With a surplus of books in my home it's hard to keep track of which ones I lend out and which ones I've just put away for another time. So by utilizing this kit I can make sure I have documentation of which books are out and when they need to come back to me.

I've also had thoughts of using this kit as a great alternative to gift tags this year. How cute would these be on a package wrapped in brown paper? Simple and festive!

This Personal Library Kit comes with the following:
  • Book Information Card
  • Card Envelope
  • Date Stamp
  • Ink Pad
  • Pencil
 You simply attach the envelope onto the book you wish to loan out, fill out a book information card (with the information about the book and the person borrowing the book) and stamp it with the date. You stamp the card envelope in the book with the return date so that the borrower knows when they should bring it back to you.

Keep the card in a Rolodex (or a safe place) until the book is returned. Then add it back to the envelope and wait for the next person to borrow it. What a great way to keep track of where your books have traveled!

Like what you see?

Head on over to the Knock Knock website to see more awesome ideas for gifts and useful items to keep track of everything you need to keep track of! You can also find Knock Knock on Facebook and follow them on Twitter at @KnockKnock.

What would you get from Knock Knock?

Knock Knock is part of the Noise Girls Winter Gift Guide giveaway. Head on over to see great ideas for you and your family this Winter season.

Head back to enter to win one of three amazing prize packages featured in this giveaway. And make sure to check out our complete Winter Gift Guide for ideas on what to give this holiday season.

Disclaimer: I received Shark-O the Shark and a Personal Library Kit for review purposes only. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. 

Stay True to Yourself #WreckItRalph Review

My husband and I are the couple that go out to see kid movies without the kids. Even before having kids we would go to the theater to see the latest animation flick. And we have a pretty extensive collection of Blu-rays, DVDs and ... don't laugh... VHS animation titles.

So when a new Disney movie comes out we get more excited than our kids do. And that was just the case with Wreck-It Ralph. Not only was this movie a feel good film that made us feel all warm and fuzzy inside, it was also a film we walked out knowing we'd be back to take our kids to watch it. And I'm pretty sure it'll be in our extensive movie collection as soon as it comes out on Blu-ray!

Bad Guy Turned Good
Now Ralph isn't really a bad guy, he just plays one in the game Wreck-It Ralph. And after 30 years of being treated like the bad guy during the game and after the arcade closes, he's ready for a change.  And after getting a chance to turn things around, he's taken on a challenge to finally be accepted.

With this challenge comes obstacles and one of his biggest obstacles is a little girl called Vanellope von Schweetz. The relationship that grows from the journey Ralph and Vanellope take is one that will make you laugh, cry, and just plain feel good!

Realizing Who We Are
With the journey Ralph takes to find his way, he comes to realize that people aren't always who they are. And by following his path and trying to find his way he was able to help Vanellope realize who she was. Ralph and Vanellope come to realize that being the "bad guy" and being the "glitch" can have their advantages. Being different isn't always a bad thing.

I absolutely loved the relationship they formed and the friendships made in this movie. Finding out who we are is important. And not just important for the main characters. The supporting actors, Fix-It Felix and Sergeant Calhoun also come to find themselves and see that they're more than just the characters they play in their games.

If you're looking for a great feel-good movie that will make you leave the theaters with a smile on your face, you have to head out to see Wreck-It Ralph! It hits theaters today and I predict amazing things for this movie. Awards, stars, and more!

Not convinced? Check out this awesome clip from the movie. Then drop all of the plans you thought you had this weekend and head to the theater.

Wreck-It Ralph hits theaters everywhere on November 2nd! 

Stay updated by checking out Wreck-It Ralph on Facebook and on Twitter @WreckItRalph!

Disclaimer: I received tickets to see Wreck-It Ralph for review purposes only. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.  

Our Amazing Spider-man @VuduFans Halloween Party #SpiderManWMT #CBias

In celebration of Halloween we decided to throw a Spider-man party. I invited family and friends over to eat some pizza and watch movies while enjoying trick-or-treaters and the festivities of Halloween. While the kids trick-or-treated the adults could enjoy watching The Amazing Spider-man movie.

Earlier this month I had pre-purchased The Amazing Spider-man at Walmart. By pre-purchasing the movie I had received early access to the digital copy through The process was so simple and easy that I cannot wait to continue to make movie purchases like this in the future. And any day now I'll be receiving my hard copy of The Amazing Spider-man on Blu-ray in the mail.

Shopping for Food
We headed out to Wal-mart again to pick up some Marketside pizza. For $35 I was able to grab 3 pizzas, salad, and sodas for our party. Talk about a party on a budget! Plus, the pizzas were so huge we had to put them on the bottom of our shopping cart.

Closer to the official release of The Amazing Spider-man, Walmart will be releasing Amazing Spider-Man themed Augmented Reality triggers that will be included on the pizza box & display pallet, triggering special Amazing Spider-Man experiences on shoppers’ iPhone, iPad or Android in-store!

Movie parties don't have to be elaborate and what better to watch a movie with than pizza? Add a salad for some nutritional value and something simple for dessert and you're set. Plus pizza is pretty universal and liked by most. From the grandkids to the grandparents, everyone was happy!

Decorating for the Party
As soon as we got home we set up for the party. Earlier in the month we made a spider web pumpkin to greet our guests as they arrived.  We also had already pre-purchased our movie on so I simply logged in and got it set up to watch before our guests arrived. Since we were eating at my mother-in-law's house I was able to set up her Roku to play the movie.

I set out some snacks and goodies including some yummy pumpkin cupcakes in these adorable spider cupcake holders I picked up at Walmart. We also put up a few other creepy crawly decorations like the spider egg sack shown below.

It was rather easy to make! I took a pair of white tights and cut the feet out. Then I stuffed the foot with webbing and then covered it on the outside with webbing tying the top off. I added a few spider rings to the webbing to create the effect we were going for.

Preparing the Marketside Pizza
As we were waiting for our family to arrive we put the pizzas in the oven to cook. These pizzas were not only super easy to bake, they came out looking like we ordered them from the local pizzeria. Yum!

I was able to find a wide variety of flavors and sizes in the Marketside Deli inside Walmart and was so happy to find my family's favorite flavors. WE went with a delicious italian-style pepperoni with yummy chunks of mozzarella, a sausage and pepperoni combo, and a 5-cheese pizza for the kids. Although my kids usually end up eating all of the pepperonis off of my pizza!

Once the kids were done eating it was time to go trick-or-treating! Since The Amazing Spider-Man isn't really for young children, we thought it'd be easier to enjoy the movie while they went door-to-door.

My son and daughter chose their costumes, a duck and a ladybug, and my nephew decided he was going to turn his costume from last year (a tarantula) into a black widow for this year. How great are these costumes?

Enjoying the Movie with
Once the kids had headed off to trick-or-treat we settled in, grabbed a slice of pizza, and started the movie. I loved how easy it was to log in to my Vudu account and access the movies I've already purchased. We not only had access to the full movie but also additional bonus scenes not seen anywhere else.

How does Vudu work? 

It's simple! Just follow the three simple steps:

1. Pre-purchase your DVD or Blu-Ray
2. Log on to and enter in the redemption code
3. Have early access to your movie on before you receive your copy in the mail

You can even purchase digital copies of movies straight from Vudu! The selection of titles is vast.

And if you sign up now for an account on you'll receive a free movie!

In order to play the movie on our TV through Vudu we used my mother-in-law's Roku media player but there are plenty of other options to streaming movies through Vudu. We purchased a D-Link MovieNite Streaming Player from Walmart to access Netflix, Vudu, Pandora and more through our TV instead of hooking up our computer to the TV. 

If you don't wish to purchase a Media Streaming Player you can access via your Google TV, Apple TV, or your computer. You can also attach your computer to your TV to stream the movie on the big screen. 

Once the kids got back home we were able to enjoy some yummy cookies my sister-in-law made and the pumpkin cupcakes while we finished our movie as the kids sorted through their candy.

All in all it was a great Halloween and a perfect way to celebrate with family. Movie nights are pretty common in our home and we love being able to enjoy simple, easy meals while watching movies so the combination of Marketside pizza and The Amazing Spider-Man streamed through made the night even more enjoyable.

Pre-purchase your copy of The Amazing Spider-Man today at Wal-Mart and take advantage of all of the perks. Your movie delivered right to your door, bonus features on, and access to the movie before your movie arrives at your door!

For more about The Amazing Spiderman head on over to the Spider-Man Facebook page and follow them on twitter at @SpiderManMovie.

Disclaimer: I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community. This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ and Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. All opinions are my own #CBias #SocialFabric 

Gaining a Green Thumb With Miracle-Gro and the Gardenieres

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Miracle-Gro. All opinions are 100% mine.

Continuing my attempt at a green thumb has been hard. But with the help of Miracle-Gro and the Gardenieres I've gained hope for my plants. I have been able to Find beauty in the Fall by bringing my plants a little closer to home and using pots to house my herbs.

(1) Miracle-Gro

Taking inspiration from the Gardenieres projects, we've tacked a few projects of our own in our front yard. By creating a potted herb garden I've been able to easily transfer plants indoors when needed and give the proper care to each individual plant. It's also created a great focal point for our front patio and has made the area much nicer and more enjoyable to be in.

By using herbs to decorate our patio we've created a functional garden that's both great to look at and useful in the kitchen. When I need herbs for cooking all I have to do is snip a few off the plants in the planters. It's not only saved our family time running out to the grocery store, it's also saved us money.


For potted plant projects, check out Miracle-Gro's Potting Mix. It feeds plants for up to 6 months with the Miracle-Gro Continuous Release Plant Food. It's rich organic materials help improve drainage and air flow. You can also use Miracle-Gro® LiquaFeed®. It makes feeding as easy as watering and feeds plants through leaves and roots. It's great to use with all flowers, vegetables, trees and shrubs.

To find out how to create your own Potted Herb Garden, watch this Gardenieres video below:

Interested in starting a plant project of your own? Find out what Miracle-Gro product is best for the project you're looking to tackle:

For in-ground projects

  • Miracle-Gro® Garden Soil for Flowers & Vegetables: Specially formulated for annuals, perennials, and vegetables. Improves existing soil to build strong roots. Feeds up to 3 months with Miracle-Gro® Continuous Release Plant Food
  • Miracle-Gro® LiquaFeed®: Makes Feeding as Easy as Watering. Feeds plants through leaves and roots. Safe to use with all flowers, vegetables, trees and shrubs


For Planting Trees & Shrubs

  • Miracle-Gro® Garden Soil for Trees & Shrubs: Ideal for trees, evergreens, and flowering shrubs.. Feeds up to 3 months with Miracle-Gro® Continuous Release Plant Food. Great for roses too!
  • Miracle-Gro® Tree & Shrub Fertilizer Spikes: Balanced feeding for all deciduous trees and shrubs


You can follow the Miracle-Gro Facebook page to find out more on tips and tricks for keeping your garden green all year round. You can also talk with fellow gardeners and share stories.

How have you found the beauty in the Fall?


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