Follow Me

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Mormon Mom Planner by In The Leafy Treetops

November 29, 2017 0 Comments

For as long as I can remember, I have kept track of my schedule in a notebook, planner, or calendar. I'm also an avid note-taker. I kept journals growing up, and always made sure to track my children's progress in their baby book. When I go somewhere where information is given, such as church, something work-related, or IEP meetings, I always take my notebook and nice pen. Here is where my planners come in. My planner is another great way for me to keep notes and ideas, in one place and to keep track of my busy schedule. The contentment I feel after being able to jot down home/sports/school/church events for myself and our kids, and also my work schedule, is one of the best thing ever! It makes me feel like I can breathe better. A huge weight off my shoulders. Organization = perfection! I have been following the planner community for a while, and have started to fall in love with a few different brands.

Melinda Christensen is the face behind In The Leafy Treetops and the brilliant idea of the original Mormon Mom Planner. She is an LDS mother of 6 little ones. After trial and error, and many revisions to her own journal + schedule + planner - a three-ring binder in the beginning - she finally managed to perfect a journal-writing, schedule-keeping, list-making, idea-storing, lesson-planning, family-organizing planner.

Recently, I was sent a 2018 Mormon Mom Planner & some adorable accessories to review, and boy, am I excited to share with you this amazing creation! 

Right out of the package, I noticed the awesome spiral-bound, full-color pages, heavy duty cover, and thick tabs that make it easy to navigate. There are plenty of places to write down everything you'd possibly need to and sprinkled with a beautiful collection of inspirational quotes tucked amongst the coordinating colors and patterns. Sitting at 6” by 9” and 1.25 inches thick, this planner includes everything a mom could possibly need. I don't want to miss anything, so I've included the list of what the Mormon Mom Planner entails, according to the In The Leafy Treetops website:

Year at a glance calendars

A Few of my Favorite Things page - lets you keep track of what makes you unique. Also included is the 'Year in Review' page where you can record highlights of the year that you want to be sure to remember.

Scripture Reading Charts for all of the Standard Works

Visiting Teaching Pages to help you remember and keep track of the sisters you visit

Holiday Planning Pages (Traditional U.S. Holidays such as New Year's, Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas

Financial Management Sheet for getting out of debt, tithing, and savings plans

Birthday and Anniversary spread

Thank you card tracker

Monthly Planner (unique and simple) with squares large enough for any handwriting, notes column, and a mini preview calendar of the next two months.

Monthly Goals & To-Do Planning spread

Simple Budget section each month

Relationship Improvement page each month

Sunday Lessons & Teaching Pages help you in your gospel study by giving you section for notes and an outline of each week's lesson.

Weekly Spread with a simple and powerful three row design. Each weekly page also includes a daily checklist for prayer, scriptures, as well as note sections for meal plans, ideas, and inspirations

Year in Review spread

Quotes and scriptures to inspire you throughout the year

Note pages (2-3 pages at the end of each monthly section)

Back to School planning pages

Summer planning pages

Monthly Planning Matrix (versatile spread to use how you would like, i.e. exercise, meal planning, shopping lists, work, gratitude, etc.)

The Living Christ & Family Proclamation

Family Focus - This planner is designed around the importance of the home and family.

Family Night Planning pages help you keep track of assignments and be deliberate in your preparation, as well as a notes section for family council items

Additional note pages at the end of each month with a grid pattern

Medical and Healthcare pages where you can track doctor appointments, pharmacies and medications and emergency contact info.
The Home & Family section has it's very own tab, and is exclusive to the Mormon Mom Planner.

It includes:

Together Forever a spread dedicated to your marriage.

All About Me” page

Child Tracking pages to keep track of everything from shoe sizes to present ideas for their next birthday.

Family Ideals and Goals, including plans for chores and housework

Financial Management and Debt-elimination

Emergency Preparedness

Home maintenance and cleaning schedule

Vacation planning sheet including a packing list and meal planning

The Mormon Mom Planner isn't the only one available from In The Leafy Treetops. There are several other planners and a wide assortment of products available for purchase. 

Similar to the Mormon Mom Planner, minus the “Mom” part. This planner has everything the Mormon Mom Planner has with the exception of the Home & Family pages or the Family Home Evening Sections. It's perfect for any LDS woman who doesn't yet have kids or is now an empty-nester.

Same easy-to-use design, and about ¼ inch thinner than the Mormon Mom version, this is a non-denominational planner. It still has all the other goodies, but doesn't include the Family Home Evening pages, Sunday pages, Home & Family section, pages for tracking scripture reading, or the scripture quotes throughout the pages. Perfect for anyone but especially for mom's who want a smaller planner that's easier to tuck anywhere, someone who likes simple planning without extras, college student, teenagers, or empty-nesters to name a few.

Exactly what is says a horizontal version of the Mormon Mom Planner, so it has a left-to-right spread thanks to the wide boxes. Giving a different look and feel as well as a tad more space for the weekly sections. Weeks in the Horizontal planner start on Monday, rather than Sunday.

•  Mom-On-The-Go
This one is a super functional, non-denominational, though still Christian-based planner. So Bible reading charts, inspirational quotes, emphasis on the importance of Home & Family, the daily checklists for prayer, notes, menu-planning, as well as inspirations. Since it isn't LDS-based, there aren't Family Home Evening pages or Sunday lesson pages with LDS curriculum.

I think this is a fantastic idea! In The Leafy Treetops offers an unbound, unpunched version of the Mormon Mom Planner. Meaning you can punch the pages to work with “any a5 notebook, Franklin, Websters or disc bound system”! How cool is that?!
At $4.99, the thick and durable laminate bookmarks make marking your spot easy! 5 beautiful designs to choose from.

Currently selling for $5.00, the band stampers are a fun, quick, and easy way to add commonly-used words and phrases to your planners pages!

Go look through In The Leafy Treetops beautiful products and come back and let me know which item is your favorite!

post signature

Friday, June 19, 2015

Minbie bottle & nipple review

June 19, 2015 0 Comments
When I was given the chance to review the Minbie nipple (and bottle) I was thrilled. As a mom to a breastfeeding baby, I am exhausted. But as a mom to a breastfeeding baby who won't take a bottle, I am fried. I knew the second I saw the photos of the Minbie that this would be worth a shot!

When we opened it, I was so ecstatic to find that they mailed it to us all the way from Australia! How awesome is that?!

Inside the packaging was a nice letter from Minbie. A bottle (which I had no idea was coming!) and a 3+ month nipple. The bottles are available in either 120ml glass or a 210ml BPA-free plastic. The nipple is made from a high-quality silicone. They are available in a wide range of flows from x-tra slow for your newborn to advanced for your baby who is 6 months or more. The newborn feeding kit is perfect as a gift or first time mom. It includes a plastic bottle and slow flow nipple.

 I right off the bat was very intrigued by the design - it's an elongated nipple that seems so much like what a breastfeeding baby is used to - Winning so far!

 So was Palmer, apparently. Because I had barely pulled it from the packaging when she scooped it up and started sucking on it! I have given her a bottle three separate times now, each time from the Minbie, and each time she has drank it like a champ! The Minbie has helped our non-bottle-taking 9-month-old to take a bottle as if she has had one since 9 weeks! Fabulous!

I liked this diagram the best from the Minbie website, to show just exactly WHY Minbie is a better nipple design than other nipples. Why it's best for a baby transitioning to a bottle. Or even a baby transitioning FROM the bottle to be breastfed. I think the best part is the elongated nipple - it sits farther back in the mouth, just like a mother's nipple does! We are only a few weeks in, and the real test comes when she takes the bottle from someone besides me! Hopefully all goes as smoothly as it has thus far. If you have a baby struggling to take a bottle, you really should order the Minbie here. If you have a baby you have been supplementing for some time and want to wean back to the breast, you should consider giving it a try! Thanks again to Minbie for giving us a chance to review this amazing bottle + nipple, and giving mom a chance for some sleep!

Monday, February 16, 2015

Baby Merlin's Magic Sleepsuit

February 16, 2015 2 Comments

When given the chance to review the Baby Merlin's Magic Sleepsuit, I was pretty excited! I have heard nothing but good things about it on my birth boards, and a quick google search made me realize it's the topic of many discussions on mom-sites. "MMSS", "Magic sleepsuit????", "Help! Is the Merlin Magic Sleepsuit really worth it?" were just a few of the many topics I came across while looking up what it was. Was it possible that a zip-up, "snowsuit" looking outfit could help a non-sleeping baby sleep? Would it help improve Palmer's sleep when she was going through a growth spurt? Would I screw things up by getting one for my already-sleeps-through-the-night 5 month old? What's so awesome about the Baby Merlin's Magic Sleepsuit? Would baby overheat in it? Was it safe? Is it going to be counteractive to the already safe-sleep practices we use in our home? (she only has a fitted sheet on her crib, and pre-Merlin, went down, on her back in an Aden + Anais swaddle blanket)

The day we received our sleepsuit in the mail, I was pretty excited. I won't lie - we had some giggles over the marshmallow-man effect it gave Palmer. It looks hilarious. First night down, I put her inside of it in just her diaper (the video is her first night) I carried her up and laid her in her crib right after the video. Let me warn you - I did not rehearse or practice, and I am apparently NOT the greatest at video reviews. But I know that I needed to get this blog posted before the info left my mind, so I am sharing the video anyway, in it's not-so-awesome, mumbling glory.

She slept awesome! No stirring around the normal 5:30 am timeframe like she usually does! She slept until just before my 7:30 am alarm went off! Amazing! She did wake up with chilly cheeks, hands, and feet, though. So I made a mental note to put socks on next time.

Night 2: I placed Palmer into the sleepsuit in just a onesie. My babies tend to sleep warm, and I didn't want to overheat her, so we tried it with a onesie this time. My only complaint from that night was her poor toes were so cold in the morning, again. I had forgotten to put her socks on after getting her into the suit! So the next night, we did a onesie and SOCKS. In the morning, around 5:30, she woke up to eat, and her legs had somehow gotten pulled up, into the sleepsuit. Bummer! I thought of how annoying that was going to be each night, to have to reach up into the tiny leg hole and pull her legs back down.

Night 3: Palmer went down in a onesie (and socks this time!) and slept 6 hours straight! Fantastic! She hasn't been feeling well, so I am not surprised she awoke after a mere 6 hours, but I honestly wonder if we would have even had THREE hours had she not been zipped up in the comfort of her new Baby Merlin's Magic Sleepsuit. Cheeks and toes were a bit chilly, so apparently I just need to learn to up my thermostat for our bedroom temp. Palmer sleeps in her crib, which is against our bedroom window.

Night 4: After the cold feet/cold cheeks night, I decided to go ahead and give her a try in the sleepsuit in a light sleeper. We followed the same routine we always do - feed her around 9:00pm, and by 9:30, she is drowsy and zipped up, ready to lay down. She slept amazing that night too, however, when she woke up around 7:00, she was a little sweaty. I do know my kids are warm sleepers, so I expected this, but wanted to have a good comparison of the different ways she went down in it, to help with this review. So I know for me personally, she runs a little cool in just a diaper, a little hot in footed sleepers, and just right in a onesie, provided she has socks to keep those toes warm!

I love the snugness and warmth it provides to my daughter, and honestly, I feel she does too. I know that's the reason she sleeps fantastic when in the sleepsuit, no matter what she's wearing. Many nights, when she wakes up for the first time, she is frantic and fussing. When I get to her crib, she has busted out of the comfort of her swaddle and has one arm out and the unraveled the blanket and it's sitting on her face! The Merlin's Magic Sleepsuit has eliminated that scared-to-death, pit-in-my-stomach feeling I've gotten several mornings (or middle of the nights) when I wake up to her with a blanket on her face, wriggling to get out from under it.

I can imagine the Merlin would have been a great addition to our family several weeks ago! It's been a lifesaver for a baby who is slowly learning how to break out of the swaddle, but not yet ready to sleep in her crib without something swaddling her.

Maureen is the brilliant mind behind the Baby Merlin's Magic Sleepsuit. She is a mother of 4, and a pediatric physical therapist. When her own son wasn't sleeping well in his crib at night, she created the Magic Sleepsuit to stimulate the calming, comforting environment of his car seat, where he slept soundly. The sleepsuit is designed to replace loose bedding a promote back sleeping, giving baby a wonderfully peaceful environment to sleep in. It reduces their reflexes, which in turn helps them stay sleeping longer periods of time. Made from a soft microfleece outer-layer and a soft cotton inner-layer, sandwiched between the two is a layer of poly-fil, the awesome combination makes a just-right sleep environment for baby. Best of all? As a mom of four, I can't imagine how difficult this product would be if it had one, centered zipper or wasn't machine washable. However, it IS machine washable (win!) and also has a DOUBLE zipper which not only makes getting Palmer into and out of the suit a breeze, but diaper changes are fantastically easy too!

It comes in several different color choices and is affordable at the price of $39.95.

There are so many reasons why the sleepsuit is a great addition to our home. The main one? Fantastic sleep! With sleep, everything else falls into place. When Palmer isn't sleeping, I am not sleeping, and when mama isn't sleeping? Well, chaos ensues. So thanks so much to the Baby Merlin's Magic Sleepsuit for eliminating the chaos!