The Blogging Community -- a review


Bonggamom Finds has been running for almost a year, and in that time I've reviewed lots of great products and services. Today I'm reviewing the Blogging Community. Whatever for?, you ask. Well, first, because I think it would make a cool post. Second, because it's not something you'd expect to find on a review blog, and doing unexpected things makes me all mysterious and cool. And third, it's because at this point in time, I'm eyeing one reward in particular -- the awesome chance to win a trip to the BlogHer '09 conference in Chicago, sponsored by Mabel's Labels. And that would be cool. See, I'm all about being cool today.

To enter, I have to write a kickass essay on the rewards and benefits of being a blogger. So, in my standard good/bad/bongga format, here's what I think about the blogging community:


The Good
* Bloggers listen. As I said in one of my earlier reflections on blogging, blogging has given me an emotional outlet. The blogging community is like having your own interactive diary -- you can pour your heart out and other bloggers are always ready with a kind word. If you ask for an opinion, bloggers will give it (thanks for telling me what you think of my hair, blogosphere).

* Bloggers pat you on the back. Realizing that people thought your post worthy enough to leave a comment. Or a Digg, or a Stumble. Realizing that companies respect your opinion and recognize your influence. It all does wonders for my sense of self worth. There's nothing as satisfying as receiving an email from someone saying he bought a particular toy for his kid because of your review -- and his kid loved it.

* Bloggers share. Good news. Bad news. Freebies. Giveaways. Feeling lucky? Bloggers give out prizes galore. Bored? Bloggers are happy to point you to articles or videos or anything you want. Want to know how to clean your ears? Bloggers can help with that too. Do you have a good cause to promote? Bloggers will join. Take my recent Girl Scout Cookie giveaway as an example -- people are entering in droves. It's just a lousy box of DoSiDo's, for God's sake -- so I'm assuming that everyone's doing it because they want to do their part to help Quaker Oats donate boxes of oatmeal to hungry kids.

* Bloggers influence. Forget speaking softly and carrying a big stick. Bloggers speak loudly, and traded the stick in for a lightning-fast whip. We're a force to be reckoned with. As the Motrin Moms incident proved, online word of mouth can make or break a product. And I like being a part of that.



The Bad
* Bloggers share. Yes, they do -- but it's not always nice. You get all kinds of opinions, many criticisms, from people who don't even know you. In one of my early posts, some nasty troll accused me of treating my kids like fashion accessories. Even though the idea is actually ludicrous (I don't drape 3Po around my neck like a faux fur), but it still hurt.

* Bloggers suck you in. You can get so wrapped up in sharing your life with the blogging community that you miss out on actual life. Like twittering your way through your daughter's dance recital. Of course, that isn't really the blogging community's fault, it's yours. But then again, if those twitters weren't so interesting, you wouldn't be so glued to them, so maybe you can blame the blogging community after all. Not!


The Bongga
* Bloggers connect. Being a stay-at-home parent can be so isolating, and the thing I love most about the blogging community is how I've connected to other people who can relate to my experiences -- other moms, old friends, Filipinas, Filipinas married to Englishmen, ex-dancers, the whole lot. You name it, there's a part of me that has found a kindred spirit around the blogosphere.

* Bloggers can cure cancer. Okay, that last part wasn't true. But if ever someone does cure cancer, you can bet the blogging community will be the first to know -- will make darn sure that everyone on earth benefits from it.

So what's my final verdict on the blogging community? Cue the violin music and get out the 5 shiny paper stars -- we rock.


Thanks again to Mabel's Labels for sponsoring this contest and giving bloggers like me the chance to attend BlogHer '09. Click here for the complete rules and regulations. The contest ends on Feb. 9; good luck to everyone -- but truthfully, I hope I win!
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Win a scholarship to BlogHer 09




BlogHer 09... it's where every female blogger (and most male bloggers) wants to be. I know lots of bloggers who really want to go but may not make it due to the harsh realities of today's economy (myself included!). Fortunately, some companies realize the amazing influence and reach that bloggers have, and they are offering sponsorships to a select few bloggers to attend BlogHer09. One such company is Label Daddy, a made-in-the-USA label company. They're offering a partial BlogHer scholarship (they'll pay for the $200 conference pass) to two lucky readers of MomDot. Click here to go to their Label Daddy BlogHer 09 Sponsorship post for more information. Thanks to both MomDot and Label Daddy, and good luck to all who enter (especially me!).
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Free breakfast at Ikea this weekend



IKEA has lots of promotions going on this weekend! I'm not in the market for mattresses or pillows, so the only one I'm interested in is the Free Breakfast. Sure, I'm only saving 99 cents, and I'll probably buy $30 worth of IKEA junk stuff to make up for it, but I'm not complaining, free's free.
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Congratulations... it's a Tag!



I recently heard that Leapfrog is coming up with a Tag reader for the toddler set! Set for ages 2-4 years, the Tag Jr. will feature a chunky, easy-to-hold reader and board books that play stories, sounds and music. How cool is that? I have a feeling that this Tag. Jr. is going to do to baby board books what Baby Einstein did for baby videos. Watch for it this coming summer!
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Win a box of Girl Scout Cookies!



This month, along with twenty-four other bloggers, I'm joining Quaker Oats in promoting Start With Substance, a campaign to donate a million bowls of oatmeal to feed hungry children in the US -- and I'm giving away one of the yummiest things you can make from oatmeal, namely some oatmeal peanut butter cookies -- in particular, Girl Scout DoSiDo cookies. Why DoSiDo's?

* Because everybody loves Girl Scout Cookies. Okay, they're not as healthy as a bowl of oatmeal, but at least they're trans-fat free, and the peanut butter in them is safe to eat.

* Because The Pea wants to sell 150 boxes of Girl Scout cookies -- good luck with that, my darling -- and this is a great reason to add one more box to her order list.

With that said, here's how you can win a box of mouth-watering Girl Scout DoSiDo cookies:


1) Go to Quaker's Facebook page and enter the UPC code from your favorite Quaker Oats product. Actually, you don't even need to have bought a Quaker Oats product. Just type in 030000013809 (that's five zeros between the 3 and the 1, in case you don't want to count). Then come back here and leave a comment to say you've done it. There's no way I can check, so I'm taking your word for it.



2) For FIVE extra entries, go to Quaker's Facebook page, download a photo of the Quaker Man, and have your photo taken with it. Then upload it to the Quaker Facebook page. Then go to my Quaker Oats post and leave a comment with the link to your photo. Then come back here and leave 5 comments, telling me you've done it. OK, that was kind of complicated but I have faith in your ability to follow my convoluted instructions. Just remember to leave a comment on my Quaker Oats post as well as this post!

3) You get an extra entry each for: blogging about this contest *or* twittering about this contest *or* following me on Twitter. Leave a separate comment for each extra entry you qualify for (and please leave the link as well).

4) This contest is only open to continental US addresses.

5) This contest will end at midnight EST on February 10, 2009. I will draw a winner from the eligible comments and post the winner's name on February 11.

Only one person can win the cookies, but think of all those hungry children who end up winners if you join!


This giveaway is part of the Bloggy Giveaways January Carnival; head on over for more great giveaways!
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Disney Photo Calendar


Our Disney Photopass calendar has just arrived, and we couldn't be more excited! What a great way for our kids to remember their first Disneyland vacation, all throughout 2009.

The Good

These calendars are super easy to create. You choose which photos to include (from your own uploads, your Disney PhotoPass photos or Disney's collection of stock photos). You can choose from several layouts. You can choose which month you start your calendar. You can even input personal holidays. All of this takes time, so in case some inconvenient task pops up (like feeding your kids dinner or helping with homework), you can save your project and come back to it later.




The Bad

This is actually a replacement calendar: somehow they screwed up the first one they sent us. Someone else's order got mixed in with ours -- instead of a March calendar page, we got a photo of a green lizard lady, and the other side, which was supposed to our April photo, was blank.

Maybe that just a fluke, but surely even Disney knows that people like a wider variety of layouts (only 1 background design per month, and the 2-photo layouts only take portrait photos, not landscape). I also hate having no full-screen preview of the calendar. Does anyone else hate having to scroll up and down to see your calendar, or is it just me?


The Bongga

Their customer service is first rate, just like it is at the Disneyland parks. When I emailed them about the defective calendar they sent, I received a response within a day. They immediately reprinted the calendar and mailed it out, no questions asked. They didn't even ask me to return the defective calendar, or ask me to send a photo of the defective page to prove I wasn't scamming them for a free calendar. For those not so trusting, see Lizard Lady below:
I didn't even have to return the defective calendar. So thanks to Disney's generous customer service, I now have 2 calendars, 1 for us and 1 for the grandparents. I just have to give it to them after April so they don't wonder what Lizard Lady is doing there.
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Create some curl jealousy with CURLS Gel-les'c



Hey, all you curly-haired cuties! CURLS haircare products has just introduced a new product, Curl Gel-les'c (pronounced Curl Jealousy), a styling product that tames frizz, creates curls and imparts shine. It's organic like the other CURLS products it's make everyone as green with envy as the botanicals it's based on.

Want to try some for yourself? Send a photo of your best curls to pr@curls.biz. Three winners with the most enviable curls will win a free bottle of Curl Gel-les'c and a matching t-shirt. Or keep a lookout right here -- I'll be hosting a Curl Gel-les'c giveaway soon!


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Win $5,000 for college from Leapfrog



There are only ten days left to vote for your favorite entry on Leapfrog's See the Learning Photo and Video Contest ; the contest ends January 1-31, 2009. Vote and help your favorite Leapfrog family get a family trip to Hollywood and behind-the-scenes studio tour!


Don't worry, there's something in it for you, too: when you cast a vote for your favorite entry, you'll automatically be entered for a chance to win $5,000 for college from Upromise. You can vote once a day!
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Lands End's new UPF clothing line



Here comes the sun.... Land's End has come up with a new sun-protective clothing line called Sun.Life. Sun protection is a big deal in our family, so Hooray! With ratings of UPF 30-50, it's the perfect option for parents who want to ensure sun protection for their kids and themselves. The most exciting thing about it is the price -- starting at $12.50 for kids tees, and $15 for women's tees. Stylish, affordable and sun-friendly, what more can you ask for?
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Hair styling for lazy moms


Now that I've cut my hair, it has really sprung to life. Now that it isn't weighed down by its length, the natural wave and body in my hair has returned in full force. Every morning I send The Pea into hysterics with my crazy, puffed-up morning hair.



I'm still working on a hairstyle regimen, but right now what works for me for the crazy morning rush is a quick douse of tap water and a couple of squirts of Aveda's Smooth Infusion style-prep smoother to work through my damp hair. I run a comb through my hair and fluff up the ends, and that's it.


I've found that Curly Q's Moist Curls Moisturizer (which actually belongs to The Pea -- shh, don't let her know). helps tame the mid-day dry frizziness. And the Radiant Ringlets Curl Gloss (again, owned by The Pea) gives a nice shine for evening styling.

Note, not once have I mentioned the words "blow dry". I'm hoping I can still get by without it. Thanks to these products, I think my hair looks (and smells) deeevine.

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Our Day 12 (Ralphina the Roly Poly) winner is....


.... MJ. Congratulations! You've won a copy of Ralphina the Roly Poly.

Thanks to everyone who entered, and I hope you keep coming back to Bonggamom Finds all throughout 2009, for honest product reviews and fun giveaways!
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Our Day 11 (Bailey School Kids chapter book) winner is....


... Karen -- Congratulations! Karen has a wonderful children's books review site, so this prize is right up her alley. Enjoy the book!

To everyone else who entered, thank you -- and you have until midnight tonight to enter my last giveaway for this series, Ralphina the Roly Poly.
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Our Day 10 (snowman book) winner is.....


... nanja. Congratulations, you've won a copy of The Biggest, Best Snowman by Margery Cuyler! Please send your mailing address to bonggamom@yahoo.com so I can get the book sent out to you. Thanks to you and everyone else who entered.
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Leap Pad -- and oldie but goodie


I've been clearing out our playroom, and have been selling some of the kids' toys on Craigslist to make room for the Christmas and birthday toy haul. Since the kids received so many great new Leapfrog toys last year, I decided that their old Leap Pads would have to go. At first I planned to donate the toys because I didn't think anyone would buy them after so many years, but I posted them for sale anyway, just to see.

Boy was I wrong. Within hours my inbox was flooded with offers. I guess I shouldn't be so surprised -- my offer price was $1 per book/cartridge set, so it was quite a steal (they're on clearance, new, at the Leapfrog online store for $5.99 each). Even with all of Leapfrog's newer offerings, the Leap Pad is still a fabulous toy. It still makes learning to read fun, and it's still Leapfrog's original success story.

Damn, I should have asked for more money :)
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Our Day 8 (Where's Baby) winner is....


....cdziuba! You've won one of my favorite baby books, Where is Baby's Bellybutton. I hope your baby enjoys it as much as mine did. Please send your mailing address to bonggamom@yahoo.com so I know where to send it. Thanks to everyone who entered -- and remember, there are only 4 more days to enter the rest of my 12 Days of Christmas givewaways!
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Our Day 7 (Kung Fu Panda cd) winners are....


... Lindley and betty R.~Simply Southern. Congratulations, you'll each receive a Kung Fu Panda activity cd. Thanks to everyone who entered, and are still entering, my 12 Days of Christmas giveaways!
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Jump for joy at Pump It Up Jr!


Good morning all -- our Day 6 winner is Staci! You've won a Jump in the Jumpy House CD, so please send me your mailing address and I'll make sure it gets to you.



And speaking of jumping in a jumpy house, 3Po's and Jammy's party at Pump It Up Jr. was a rousing success. Pump It Up Jr. is like Pump It Up's little brother -- a bouncy place designed for younger kids under age 6. The slides aren't as tall, so youngsters don't get intimidated (or parents aren't forcedto go in to help their fearless -- but physically smaller -- younger kids).



Birthday parties are held in only 1 room (as opposed to 2 with the regular Pump It Up). I was a bit worried about this at first because it's a 2 hour party. I wondered whether 80 minutes of bouncing on the same inflatables (two fast slides, an obstacle course, a regular bouncy house and a toddler's bouncy house/obstacle course) would be too boring for the kids, especially the older ones?



I needn't have worried. Everyone was busy on the slide and obstacle course the whole time, and the staff were there to play games with the kids and make sure everything went smoothly. Not one kid said anything about being bored (actually, 3Po did complain, but that was because he was hungry and wanted to go eat his birthday cake).



Just like regular Pump It Up, the Jr. party room still has the special birthday chair for the celebrant, and -- best of all -- at the end of the party, you pick up your presents and leave. No cleanup. If you can afford the $270 price tag, I say bounce on over and book your preschooler's party there.


Again, congratulations to Staci. To everyone else, there are still 6 more days of giveaways open, so keep on entering!

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Our Day 5 (Disney Photo Mug) winner is.....




.... silverhartgirl -- congratulations! Watch out for an email from me with your own special code for a free Disney Photo Mug from Disney's Photo Pass.

To everyone else who entered, thanks so much. Even if you're not celebrating a win like silverhartgirl, there's always something to celebrate at Disney -- in fact, they're celebrating throughout 2009 with their "What Will You Celebrate?" theme. In case you didn't know, this year you'll be able to get into Disneyland or Disney World FREE on your birthday! Also, register with Disney for a chance to win a special Disney Celebration Vacation!
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Our Day 4 (Disney Calendar) winner is....



... the Buki Family! Within the next couple of days, I'll send you your online code for a free Disney Photo Calendar from Disney's Photo Pass. Just like Cinderella's coach, it will turn into a pumpkin soon -- it expires on January 31 -- so remember to use it before then!


Congratulations, I hope you enjoy your calendar! (I just finished making mine, and I'm eagerly awaiting its arrival in the mail). To everyone else who entered, thanks so much. Even if you're not celebrating a win like the Buki Family, there's always something to celebrate at Disney -- in fact, they're celebrating throughout 2009 with their "What Will You Celebrate?" theme. In case you didn't know, this year you'll be able to get into Disneyland or Disney World FREE on your birthday! Also, register with Disney for a chance to win a special Disney Celebration Vacation!
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Go, Go, GOShredder!




Out with the old, in with the new.... January is always a time to clean out old papers from our filing cabinet. With the risk of identity theft, we're very careful about shredding our personal documents, but I'm all torn up (pun intended) about our current shredder. It's a pain to take in and out of the storage box because the shredder keeps coming off the wastebasket part. It also overheats pretty quickly, after about 30 minutes of shredding, and we need to let it cool down before starting it up again. So when Office Max offered to let me have a go (pun intented) at their new portable GoShredder, I jumped at the chance.

The two words that come to mind when looking at the GoShredder are "cube" and "cute", so it definitely passes the coolness test. But would it perform? Surprisingly, it did!

The paper is shred into diamond-shaped bits, so there's no hope of anyone stealing the scraps from our recycling bin and pieceing the documents back together gether any of the documents (I believe that would be Security Level 3).

The shreds fall into a drawer beneath the shredding mechanism; when the drawer is full (it seems to hold about 70 sheets worth of shredded paper, a surprisingly large amount!) simply empty it into your recycling bin.

The good: Because of its compact size, light weight and carry handle, it's easy to take out of storage, use, and put back in place (important for lazy people like me).

The bad: Shredding capacity is closer to 6 sheets of paper at a time, not 8. Which is not a problem if you only use it for occasional shredding, not if you're trying to hide evidence of fraud or something.

video



The bongga: The boys and I shredded files like nobody's business (I emptied the bin 4 or 5 times over the course of about an hour), and the machine didn't overheat at all. And I love, love, love the carrying handle.

The final verdict: It's wonderful for light, occasional document shredding. I was impressed!
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Our Day 3 (Curly Q) winner is....



..... blueviolet -- Congratulations! Please send your mailing address to bonggamom@yahoo.com within the next 5 days so we can get your prize sent out to you.

Thanks so much everyone who entered and shared your favorite scents! Alfie doesn't understand why women enjoy smelling like fruit and flowers (he's an Opium kind of guy) , but we know better, don't we?

And because you're all such good sports, use this special promo code -- cqtwirl -- for 20% off of any Curly Q product(s) from now until 1/31/09:

cqtwirl


So go wild and enjoy all those wonderful Curly Q products!
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Our Day 2 (Didj) winner is...


... Andreah (at) Life's a Hoot (comment #6; see, people, it was all those extra entries that did it. Let this be a lesson!). Congratulations!

To everyone else, thank you for entering, especially to those who twittered and blogged and joined the Leapfrog community -- I visited all your blogs and twitters and I do appreciate all the help you gave me in getting the word out. There are still 10 open giveaways in my 12 Days of Christmas series, so still have lots more chances to win something!
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Discovery Store Paper Recycling Studio


The holidays may be over, but with three kids worth of Christmas presents as well as birthday presents for two boys, the fun has just begun here at our home. Over the next month or so, I'll be reviewing my kids' loot, sharing the best and brightest.

This first one -- the Discovery Paper Recycling Studio -- is sort of a quasi-present; Discovery Kids sent me this awesome toy over a month ago, but it seemed so out-of-the ordinary that I decided to make it extra special and give it to the kids as a Christmas present. I'm glad I waited; this toy was a godsend over the holiday break. Here's how it works:


Step 1: Shred and soak used paper. You could use a paper shredder, or hand your kids a pair of scissors and let them loose on some paper for 30 minutes or so. This becomes its own activity because your kids are going to have to wait a couple of hours for the paper to soak before they can proceed to the next step. My kids didn't mind the wait; they had so much fun cutting paper into strips that we ended up with about 10 times the amount that would fit into the paper mill.




Step 2: Place paper-water mix in the pulp mill, close the top and grind the paper to a pulp. This is literally the toughest part. At first, it is really difficult to grind up the paper. My kids were pushing down on the handle so hard, I thought it would snap. It took them a while to get used to pushing the handle sideways, back and forth, until the paper bits were mashed up enough.



Step 3: Grind until reaches the consistency of pea soup. It actually does look like pea soup, but that's only because one of the papers we cut up and soaked was lime green, and it dyed everything else green. One other thing to note: if you use wrapping paper or similar coated paper, it won't dissolve to a pulp like the photo above. It remain relatively intact. You can grind it in with regular white paper pulp and the resulting paper will have nice bits of the wrapping paper in it (see the Step 7 photo).


Step 4: Pour "soup" into the plastic tray and add more water to make a thin soup. For more interesting paper, you can add flowers, leaves and food coloring at this point (although the food coloring didn't seem to dye the pulp much, just the water). Have lots and lots of towels handy for the next couple of steps; it's going to get messier (and funner, as my kids would say).



Step 5: Attach a paper mold to the mesh screen and immerse it in the tray. Lift the screen straight up (copious amounts of water will drip through the screen back into the pan) and carefully remove the mold. Place a drying cloth over the shaped pulp and flip the whole thing over so that the drying cloth is at the bottom, the pulp is in the middle, and the mesh screen is on top.




Step 6: Place a sponge or towel on top of the mesh screen, and blot out as much water as you can before lifting the screen off. Place the second drying cloth on top, and transfer the whole thing to the presser. Tighten the screws on the press, leave it there for a while, and remove. (frankly, we didn't seem to need the press at all; the pulp seemed to hold together fine).



Step 7: Leave the paper to dry for at least 24 hours. You could leave the paper to dry inside the paper press, but then you'd only be able to dry 1 piece of paper per day. We made several pieces of paper, sandwiched them between 2 kitchen towels, and pressed them between 2 wooden chopping boards. I changed the towels a couple of times.

Et voila --- the next day you get small sheets, of beautiful, surprisingly sturdy paper! We've been having a lot of fun with the Paper Studio, and the kids are planning to use their new paper to make greeting cards for their grandparents.

If you're thinking about getting this for your own kids, here are some further thoughts:

The good:
The "toy" is good for hours of fun, from paper shredding to using the finished paper in other crafts.

The kids feel good about recycling paper (even though it's just a tiny fraction of the paper that gets used in our house, what with all the drawing and the crafts they do).

It's fun for a wide range of ages -- including crafty adults.

The bad:
The pulp mill handle is difficult to turn at the beginning of the pulping process. It feels like the plastic handle is going to snap off, so kids need to take care when turning the handle.

I wish the kit had more than 2 pieces of drying cloths, so that we could make more pieces of paper at a time.

The bongga:
Somebody was really using their brains when they decided to laminate the instructions. There was water all over the place, but the instructions survived intact. Due to lamination, they're ready for future rounds of paper-making!

The final verdict: You could make recycled paper without this toy, but why go through the trouble of finding instructions and coming up with your own pulp mill and mesh screen? Everything you need is right here in one little box. This one's a keeper.

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Chef Druck's giveaways


Head on over to my fellow Silicon Valley Moms Group and Savvy Source blogger, ChefDruck. She's got a gaggle of giveaways going at her site, ChefDruck Reviews:

Frecklebox Personalized BookBlog

Princess Dress Up Accessory Kit

Writer Mama Book

Jonathan's Spoons Wooden Lazy Spoon


She's also got a Global Wonders DVD giveaway running on her Being Savvy: Newark blog.
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And the winner of the post-Christmas bargain hunt is....


... Walgreens. Even today, on the 12th day of Christmas, they've still got loads of wrapping paper and Christmas cards on the shelves, just waiting for some thrifty soul to stock up on for next year. The best part? They're selling any Christmas item for only 50 cents -- yup, folks, even if the list price on that dancing snowman is $19.99, it'll only cost you 50 cents. Of course, there aren't any dancing snowman left, but if you're looking for candy, Christmas stockings, plastic plates and mugs, wrapping paper or cards, you're in luck. Otherwise, it's back to combing the back shelves at Target's 75% off clearance sale.
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On the Twelfth Day of Christmas, Bonggamom gives to thee... Ralphina the Roly-Poly


Bonggamom's Christmas blog button 08
It's the Last Day of Christmas -- Happy Three Kings Day to everyone! I've had a wonderful 12 Days of Christmas on Bonggamom Finds, and I've enjoyed reading all the comments on each of the giveaways. Our final winner of the 12 Days of Christmas giveaway series will receive a copy of Ralphina, the Roly-Poly(value $24.95). No, not Rolie Polie Olie, this is a story about another kind of Roly Poly my kids love -- the real kind.

Did you know that roly-poly bugs are part of the crustacean family? Or that they breathe through gills? These are just some of the fun roly-poly facts I learned when I read Ralphina, The Roly-Poly, a charmingly illustrated book by artist and former teacher Claudia Chandler. This is the first book I've seen that stars roly-poly bugs, (it's about time, given that every kid I know is fascinated with the little buggers). Other than the strange choice of character's name (Ralphina?), we all enjoyed the cute, simple story of a little roly-poly bug who wants to become friends with a little boy.


* To enter to win a hardbound copy of Ralphina, The Roly-Poly, leave a comment on this post and tell me your kids' favorite creepy-crawly creature. Don't forget to include your email address so I can contact you.

* For an extra entry, blog about this giveaway on your own blog and include a link to this post. Leave an extra comment with your name, email address and a link to your blog.

* For a second extra entry, Twitter about this giveaway and include a link to this post. Leave an extra comment with your name, email address and a link to the twitter post.

* For a third extra entry, put my "12 Days of Christmas" button (you can find it on this post) up on your blog's sidebar. Leave an extra comment with your name, email address and a link to your blog (the blog button must be displayed through January 6th to count).

The contest ends at midnight PST on January 17, 2009; I will draw a winner at random on January 18, 2009 and post the winner's name on the same day. For the full giveaway rules, click here. Good luck!
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On the eleventh day of Christmas, Bonggamom gives to thee... a chapter book



Today's giveaway is for the elementary school set: from the Bailey School Kids Jr. series, entitled "Reindeer DO wear Striped Underwear". It's a fun chapter book that my daughter enjoyed in first grade, and it's great for readers just starting to spread their wings.
* To enter, leave a comment on this post -- for this giveaway, any comment will do (just be nice!). Don't forget to include your email address so I can contact you.
* For an extra entry, blog about this giveaway on your own blog and include a link to this post. Leave an extra comment with your name, email address and a link to your blog.
* For a second extra entry, Twitter about this giveaway and include a link to this post. Leave an extra comment with your name, email address and a link to the twitter post.
* For a third extra entry, put my "12 Days of Christmas" button up on your blog's sidebar. Leave an extra comment with your name, email address and a link to your blog (the blog button must be displayed through January 6th to count).
The contest ends at midnight PST on January 15, 2009; I will draw a winner at random on January 16, 2009 and post the winner's name on the same day.
For the full giveaway rules, click here. Good luck -- and stay tuned for the last giveaway of my 12 Days of Christmas series tomorrow!
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On the tenth day of Christmas, Bonggamom gives to thee... a snowman book


Bonggamom's Christmas blog button 08

Ever notice how, when January rolls around, images of holly and ivy turn into images of snowflakes and snowmen? Winter is here, in all it's, uh, wintry glory. There's no better time than a cold wintry day than to snuggle up with your kids under a blanket and read a book together (poetic, huh?).



Today's winner, whoever he is, will receive a copy of The Biggest, Best Snowman (value $5.99), a fun picture book you can read with your preschoolers on a snowy day. 3Po and Jammy really relate to this book because they're the littlest in the family too, just like Little Nell in the book; they probably have all sorts of fantasies of beating their big sister in biggest-snowman competitions too.

* To enter, leave a comment on this post and tell me your kids' favorite winter activity. Don't forget to include your email address so I can contact you.

* For an extra entry, blog about this giveaway on your own blog and include a link to this post. Leave an extra comment with your name, email address and a link to your blog.

* For a second extra entry, Twitter about this giveaway and include a link to this post. Leave an extra comment with your name, email address and a link to the twitter post.

* For a third extra entry, put my "12 Days of Christmas" button up on your blog's sidebar. Leave an extra comment with your name, email address and a link to your blog (the blog button must be displayed through January 6th to count).

The contest ends at midnight PST on January 14, 2009; I will draw a winner at random on January 15, 2009 and post the winner's name on the same day. For the full giveaway rules, click here. Good luck!
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On the ninth day of Christmas, Bonggamom gives to thee... a Global Wonders DVD


Bonggamom's Christmas blog button 08

I can't really take credit for this giveaway; my fellow SavvySource city editor, Shannan Boyer of Being Savvy: Cincinnati arranged it all. Over the past two weeks, Savvy Source sites from all over the country have been giving away some wonderful multicultural DVD's from Global Wonders, and today it's my turn. I'm hosting a Global Wonders DVD giveaway over at Being Savvy: Silicon Valley, a great preschool and activity guide for parents around Silicon Valley.



What's Global Wonders? It's a delignew DVD series that uses animation and live footage to introduce your child to the vibrant and varied cultures from around the neighborhood and around the world. Think of it as Baby Einstein for preschoolers -- and parents who want to help their preschoolers gain an understanding of other cultures.



Sounds great? Head on over to my Savvy Source post to enter. Good luck!
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Our Day 1 (Leapster) winner is...


... PastormacsAnn! Congratulations, you've won the Leapster giveaway on Being Savvy: Silicon Valley.

Thanks to everyone who entered; I really enjoyed reading your fun comments. Keep visiting Bonggamom Finds; I've still got lots of ongoing giveaways!
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On the eighth day of Christmas, Bonggamom gives to thee... a book for your little baby


Bonggamom's Christmas blog button 08

Happy 2009! This first giveaway of the year features one of my favorite baby books ever, Where is Baby's Belly Button, by Karen Katz (value: $5.99). It's a wonderful lift-the-flap book that sends babies into fits of delight as they find and seek babies' body parts, and finally, the whole baby. My kids all loved this book to death, and I wanted to share the joy with other new mothers out there.



Don't worry, I'm not giving out our old one -- it has been too lovingly torn and chewed and sucked on for anyone to read. I can't even donate it but I don't have the heart to throw it away. The winner will get a brand spanking new copy. Here's how to enter:

* To enter, leave a comment on this post and tell me your baby's favorite game. Don't forget to include your email address so I can contact you.

* For an extra entry, blog about this giveaway on your own blog and include a link to this post. Leave an extra comment with your name, email address and a link to your blog.

* For a second extra entry, Twitter about this giveaway and include a link to this post. Leave an extra comment with your name, email address and a link to the twitter post.

* For a third extra entry, put my "12 Days of Christmas" button up on your blog's sidebar. Leave an extra comment with your name, email address and a link to your blog (the blog button must be displayed through January 6th to count).

The contest ends at midnight PST on January 12, 2009; I will draw a winner at random on January 13, 2009 and post the winner's name on the same day. For the full giveaway rules, click here. Good luck!
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