March 22nd is American Diabetes Association Alert Day #prediabetes

86 million American adults (more than 1 in 3) have prediabetes and are at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes, a serious health condition that can lead to heart attack and stroke. Surprisingly, nearly 90% of those with prediabetes don’t even know that they have it. But prediabetes can be reversed through weight loss, diet changes and increased physical activity, and the first step to reversing the condition is to evaluate one’s personal risk so that they can take action as soon as possible.

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That’s why the American Diabetes Association (ADA), the American Medical Association (AMA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have partnered with the Ad Council to launch the first national public service advertising campaign about prediabetes, encouraging people to learn their risk by taking a short online test at the campaign site, which also features information on prediabetes as well as lifestyle programs and tips to help people reverse their risk.

You can visit DoIHavePrediabetes.org for a short online test that will help you learn your risk for prediabetes.  Learn things like;

  • The answers to these 7 simple questions can tell you if you’re likely to have prediabetes.
  • Already slipping on your resolutions? Here are some tips to stick with healthy change.
  • What you need to know about prediabetes – and how it can be reversed.
  • Telenovela star joins new prediabetes PSA campaign [and others for Hispanic audiences].
  • Have prediabetes? If you do, you probably don’t know it yet. Here’s how you can find out.
  • Think you’re too busy for type 2 diabetes? I thought so too. 

For more information about the campaign visit DoIHavePrediabetes.org or Adcouncil.org. You can find out more about prediabetes and the organizations’ efforts to prevent type 2 diabetes at: ADA, AMA,  CDC.

The White House Takes on Diapers #DiaperGap

I’d like to share some information that was sent to me from Renata Alexis of Covenant House.  Diapers are not something that we think about often, but for struggling women and families, it’s a real problem that needs a solution.  The White House is stepping up and stepping in to help those in need work to find a resolution.

“Diapers are basic necessities for these young women and their children, just like food and housing. We work to provide diapers to them as much as we can. But right now, diapers are a big expense: We pay roughly 33 cents per diaper and wait one week per shipment. When we run out, we need to make a run to the corner store, where we end up paying premium prices.

This isn’t just our problem. Studies show nearly one in three families struggle to afford diapers for their babies.

Policy experts say that low-income families spend twice as much on diapers every year compared to some wealthier families. That’s because low-income families don’t have internet access or credit cards to order diapers in bulk online, or often don’t have transportation to buy in bulk at a big box store.

When families can’t afford a healthy number of diapers for their babies, they’re faced with the choice between buying diapers and paying for food, rent, or utilities like heat. That’s a choice that no family should have to make.

Today, the White House is highlighting a new initiative by private and non-profit entities to help fix this problem and make diapers more affordable for all. Learn more about how it will help millions of families in need.

The initiative has three key parts:

  • First, the private sector and the non-profit community have teamed up to provide a more affordable way to manufacture and distribute diapers to non-profit organizations. This means that organizations like mine can pay less than half the cost of what we normally pay for diapers, and get them faster with free two-day shipping.
  • Second, any 501(c)(3) non-profit can sign up to participate in the Community Diaper Program and begin offering these more affordable diapers to families in their communities. The National Diaper Bank Network estimates that their 280 diaper banks will be able to order more than 14 million diapers this year thanks to this program.
  • Third, even more private sector organizations are helping address the problem through diaper donation campaigns to benefit families in need.

I cannot say how much seemingly small efforts like these can impact organizations like Covenant House. When we have cheaper, more reliable access to diapers, we can invest any savings into job training programs to help these young mothers find full-time jobs to support their families.

But more important than saving money, this initiative shows these women that people care about them. They are working so hard to change their lives and provide their children with a good future, and this is the kind of support that they’ll remember for a lifetime.”

Take a minute to find out what’s being done to help families get the diapers they need at wh.gov/DiaperGap.

Bears for Humanity Review and Giveaway

If you have never heard of Bears For Humanity, you should definitely check them out. Bears For Humanity is a social commerce company that believes in 100% certified organic products, healthy children and a sustainable environment. They manufacture Teddy Bears and Animal Friends with an organic faux fur that is the closest thing to hugging a real bear (but much safer)! The company proudly employs women and at-risk mothers from the CalWORKs program. When a customer buys a Bear For Humanity stuffed pal, another just like it is sent to a child in need.

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We all shop, we all buy gifts, but how often do we see a company who donates 1:1 to children in need?

Typically, when you purchase an item online, you are asked for your name, credit card and perhaps an option to join the mailing list. When you purchase a teddy bear from Bears For Humanity™, you have the delightful task of choosing a charity – Toys For Tots, Save The Children, Semper Fi Fund, OneSimpleWish.org, Lucile Packard– because your purchase instantly doubles as a gift for a child in need!

More than that, the cuddly pal is personally delivered to a needy veteran’s house, a children’s hospital or an underprivileged household. It’s a win-win way to run a company! The stuffed bears come in two sizes – 16” Premium Bear ($39.99) and 7” Baby Bear (19.99). The many charity options and five color choices are splashed across www.BearsForHumanity.com website that opens to a philosophical question – Can A Teddy Bear Change The World?

Toy industry experts, the California welfare-to-work program known as CalWORKs and an armful of mom bloggers heartily shout, “Yes!” The benefits only begin with the buy one-donate one model. The bears are luxuriously soft! Bears For Humanity pals are the only 100% Certified Organic Cotton/ Hemp teddy bears in the world. Plus, they are naturally antibacterial and hypoallergenic which gives parents the peace of mind they don’t get from polyester plush toys!

Give a gift that gives back w/@bears4humanity. Buy 1, give 1 to a needy child #bears4humanity http://amzn.to/1Q5myfu

All of these adorably squishy bears are also available on Amazon and Whole Foods. Wouldn’t they make the PERFECT Valentine’s Day gift?

We want to share the gift of cuddles with you! Enter to win your very own Bears 4 Humanity Premium and Baby bear.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Taking Time to be a Dad Today @fatherhood.gov #fatherhood

The more involved a dad is, the more successful his children are. A father’s influence can determine a child’s social life, academic achievement, and future achievements.

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The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Family Assistance’s National Responsible Fatherhood Clearinghouse (NRFC) and the Ad Council in an effort to inspire and support men in their commitment to responsible fatherhood.

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Eighty-six percent of dads spend more time with their children today than their own fathers did with them, but a majority of dads (7 out of 10) also reported that they could use tips on how to be a better parent, according to a national survey conducted by the Ad Council. Children with involved, loving fathers are significantly more likely to do well in school, have healthy self-esteem, exhibit empathy and pro-social behavior, and avoid high-risk behaviors such as drug use, truancy, and criminal activity compared to children who have uninvolved fathers.

DreamWorks Animation donated their time, talent and resources for the campaign, which features footage and characters from the Kung Fu Panda 3 film. In the upcoming film, Po, the franchise protagonist, reunites with his long-lost birth father. The story highlights the special relationship between father and son and shows the unique challenges that Po is able to overcome with the love and support of his father.

Visit www.fatherhood.gov and http://www.adcouncil.org/ to learn more about the fatherhood movement.

Must Have Kids Clothes from Rockin’ Baby

Disclosure- I received the below in order to facilitate this post.  All opinions are my own and honest.  Please see “I disclose” for more information.
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You know that my girls love clothes, and most days they love to match. I was so excited to see these adorable clothing items from Rockin’ Baby as well as learn the great story behind the company.

About Rockin’ Baby:

This company has a great heart for charity behind them. They like to give and to help and if you are purchasing some of their slings, pouches, or clothing items, they know you do too.

Every sling, pouch, or clothing item you buy they will donate an item to mothers in desperate need in Haiti or Kenya. They will do this through well managed, non profit organizations who are committed to helping these mothers living in terrible conditions. They call this their “Mother to Mother” mission.

When they started “Mother to Mother” in 2011 they wanted to make a real difference in the world and with your help, they really have.

Rockin’ Baby used to just be a company known as the the sling and pouch company that donates a new sling to every mother in need for every sling purchased, and they just launched their first children’s apparel collection that is also a one-for-one concept: You buy. We give. One-for-one.

For every item of clothing sold across all designs from the new Rockin’ Baby collection, an item from the Hero range will be gifted to an Ebola orphan, providing vital clothing for a child in need. The project is known as Child to Child and it will be carried out in partnership with Child Fund International.

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Judy Sweat and Print Dress:

For cooler days, dress your little one in this fantastic and rather funky sweater dress.

With a soft georgette fabric smarter skirt bottom and cotton sweatshirt style top, this dress is so versatile, and can be worn during the day time, and into the night.

It’s practically 2 items for the price of one and an easy go-to on rushed mornings.

This dress is available 18-24 months all the way up to 10 years.

My Thoughts:

I absolutely loved this dress. I thought that it was adorable. The girls have warn it on warm days, just as well as on cool days and have loved it every time that they wore it. The dress is very soft and comfortable for the girls and not to mention absolutely adorable. The dress is too cute! Great fit and style for any little girl on your list this holiday season.

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MARGO Stripe Bubble Dress:

This lovely striped jersey bubble dress is a great classic piece that follows season to season.

This gorgeous bubble dress has embroidery to match back to the tee and chambray items in the collection.

This dress can be worn alone, but also great with some leggings and their smart wool coat or faux fur vest.

This adorable dress is available in sizes 18-24 Months to 10 yrs.

My Thoughts:

Wow, absolutely adorable. I’m sure that you agree with me. This dress is so cute. Right now it has been much to cold for my girls to be able to wear this dress without leggings, but it is so cute. They have gotten several compliments everytime that they put this adorable dress on.

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My Thoughts:

I got these adorable baby outfits as well, that will come in handy when my next little one arrives, and they are absolutely adorable and made very well.

Purchase:

If you are interested in purchasing some adorable clothes, or even a sling, head on over to the Rockin’ Baby website and find the perfect item for the kids in your life.

Gift giving with CARE

The holiday season is upon us and as such it is time to get gifts for those near and dear to your heart.  Some people are easy to shop for.  The Star Wars fan, gets Star Wars fun the reader gets a new e reader.  But one of the most difficult people to shop for are often those who put all their effort into helping others.  The donators, the volunteers, we all have at least on in your families. hopefully.

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I do have a few tips on what to get these special people in our lives.  One option is the Gifts of Lasting Change from CARE.  With the ability to find a gift ranging from a goat for a family in need that provides milk to a tap of clean water to a school.  The donations vary in price and type.  Each Gift of Lasting Change represents a small piece of CARE’s enormous body of work, which last year helped 72 million in 90 countries with poverty-fighting programs focused on empowering girls and women.  With each purchase you have the option to either send the recipient a personalized e-card to or to download and print a paper card to mail. And because CARE is a non-profit, all gift purchases are 100% tax-deductible.  In his recent column on holiday gift-giving in the New York Times, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and filmmaker Nicholas Kristof recommended supporting CARE’s work promoting girls’ education.

CARE celebrated the 70th anniversary of its founding on November 27. CARE was founded in the aftermath of World War II to send relief to Europeans left starving and homeless by the deadliest-ever human conflict. Actor Matt Dillon recently narrated an inspiring short video about CARE’s history that explains how CARE was founded with the creation of the CARE Package, and how the concept of the CARE Package has evolved through the decades. Today the box symbolizes lasting change.

CARE has endured not simply because there are people in need still, but because there will always be people willing to give of themselves to make a difference in people’s lives. To Give a Gift of Lasting Change to a loved one is to tell someone that they inspire you to do good for others.

Be sure to check it out and finish up those last minute gifts.

 

 

Gifts That Give Twice With World Vision For The Holidays

Looking to give a beautiful, unique gift this year? Maybe you want to do something even better then that- maybe you want to give a gift that gives back. World Vision lets you do both- you can not only give beautiful gifts that the gift-ee will love, but when you buy, your money goes to those who need it most. World Vision is Fair Trade, and helps artisans make a living wage that they can raise their families on.

This year more than 50 percent of holiday shoppers plan to purchase holiday gifts online. Look into new gift ideas that give back with just a few clicks of the mouse from the World Vision Gift Catalog.
More than 250 items, ranging in price from $10 to $39,000, are available online and in the print catalog to help improve quality of life for women, children and families in the U.S. and around the world. Give help where it is needed most and receive handcrafted gifts that are beautiful accessories:

African Soapstone Box – New to the 2014 World Vision Gift Catalog, the hand-carved African Soapstone Box is a safe place to store necklaces and rings. Coated in light blue with an image of a giraffe, this ornate box features pretty details that will complement nearly any decor. Donations go toward the Kenyan artisans who crafted the box to help provide medical care for their families. $85

 

Royal Silk Scarf – A recent addition to the Catalog, this gorgeous silk scarf adds color to the holidays and supports the needs of children and families worldwide, including those in the community where it was crafted; the luxurious silk was woven by Vietnam’s Ma Chau villagers, who receive fair wages & sustainable income through their craft. $95
[Read more…]

Learning with Understood

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If more of us actually knew the signs of learning and attention disorders, I do not think that so many children would go undiagnosed every single year. It is so sad that we as a community are so uneducated about what those signs are. One in five children struggles with issues related to reading, math, writing, focus, organization and behavioral issues, yet many children with learning and attention issues do not have a diagnosis.

If you are a parent, a friend or family member who thinks that a child might be going through learning and attention disorders, you are not alone in this. There are five learning and attention issues that are most common:

  • ADHD: More Than Moving Fast
  • Dyslexia: The Best-Known Learning Issue
  • Dyscalculia: More Than Math Anxiety
  • Dysgraphia: Wrestling With Writing
  • Dyspraxia: Trouble With Motor Skills

With the right diagnosis, parents and teachers are better able to understand what their children are going through. This leads to a better understanding of the help that they need in order to be successful. When a child is able to fully understand and overcome whatever struggles they are facing, they will finally feel normal. They will have a higher self-esteem and feel more in line with their peers. This is a BIG deal!

Understood.org provides helpful resources for parents and students with learning and attention issues as well as for parents wondering if their child may have an undiagnosed learning and attention issues. Hopefully you have not been feeling completely without help in what you are going through, but if you have, you are certainly not alone! Understood.org is a free, one-stop, easy-to-use online resource. And the sooner you get help for your child, or a child you think is in need, the sooner they can get on the track to success.

Understood was created by a coalition of 15 nonprofits, and its content and tools were informed by a survey of more than 2,200 parents of children with learning and attention issues. Understood offers free daily access to experts through chats and webinars, a safe online community that encourages parents to reach out to and learn from each other and a suite of specially designed, first-of-their-kind tools .

Whether you have worked with your child on dealing with this struggle for years or this is something new for you, Understood has resources for everyone to learn how to help these kiddos with whatever challenges they face. The You & Your Family section helps families with practical solutions and advice for social, emotional, and behavioral challenges.

If you think your child might have a challenge with learning, please do not wait. Every second counts.