Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Prepare 4 The Wild: Camp Kitchen Giveaway

I love camping! Can you tell by looking at my recent giveaways? Now I am happy to be able to bring you a giveaway for a camp kitchen! I want one of these for myself!

Grub Hub USA Camp Kitchen (A.L.L. Review)
(Certain accessories not included -only shown to provide possible functions)
ARV $380
Hosted by:
A Ladybug on the Go

The Grub Hub makes it easy to prepare for your next trip then keeps everything organized at the campsite. All outdoor cooking necessities are in one place when you need them.

The sturdy tables, stove platform, light tower, large main storage compartment and multiple organizers make outdoor meal preparation a pleasure, not a chore. Other built-in features like the utensil rack, air dry bags and collapsible sink clean-up to leave more time for fun!

All components are engineered for extended outdoor use in all weather conditions.

The Grub Hub® stores and transports all camp kitchen gear then sets up in 3 minutes to provide tables, stove support, lantern support  and organization needed for a complete campsite. It makes getting outdoors easy, fun and highly sustainable.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

"Make Our Own Network" solely organized this event and received no compensation for this publication. My opinions are 100% my own and may differ from your own or even those stated in this post. Mama Making Changes is not responsible for sponsor prize shipment.
**If you are a company and would like to see your brand advertised in a M.O.O.N. event similar to this please contact

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Not Lovin’ It: Moms and McDonalds Don’t Mix :

This Mother’s Day, moms and their kids “deserve a break” from Ronald-run school assemblies, adver-games and marketing at large
Guest post by Anna Lappé

On February 10, 2012, Ronald McDonald held court in a packed elementary school auditorium. Ronald was visiting the Lexington, Kentucky elementary school as part of his sweep of that state. The visits are meant to teach “the value of leadership and community involvement,” says Ronald, and kick off fundraising drives for Ronald McDonald Houses. According to, he’s planning to visit at least 117 more schools there this year.
What mom would imagine you send your kid off to school only to discover an all-school assembly has turned into an advertisement opportunity for a fast food chain? Today, junk food marketing happens in so many places, and in so many ways, that it’s often behind parents’ backs and beyond our control. This school assembly is just one way McDonald’s does marketing.
Marketing junk food and drink to kids is big business. McDonald’s alone spent close to $1 billion on advertising in the United States in 2011. Forty percent of this on marketing directly to kids.
We know this food marketing works: it gets kids to prefer McDonalds and to just eat more—period. With diet-related illnesses afflicting so many young people, marketing to kids and teens is downright dangerous.
I talked about all this at a TEDx event earlier this year. My point was simple: If we want to improve the health of children and teens and turn back the epidemic of preventable illnesses, like heart disease, diabetes, and more, we need to talk about marketing to kids.
Some people, when they learn about all the ways our kids are targeted, still insist it’s up to parents to make the right choices. Just turn off the TV. Talk to your kids about ads. Wisen ‘em up. Don’t blame McDonalds if your kids don’t eat right.
This argument sounds reasonable. As a mom, I couldn’t agree more: parents should take responsibility for their kids’ health. My two girls take their cues from me—at least I hope they do!—perhaps nowhere more powerfully than in the kitchen. That’s why I work hard to put good food on the table and keep junk food out of the house. I seek out stuff without high-fructose corn syrup, colorants, and additives; I analyze labels, shop at farmers’ markets, and choose organic when I can. You get the idea.
But this is the thing: The ways the food industry now targets kids are so pervasive and the tactics so deceitful that even the most diligent parent cannot prevent their kids from being inundated at the most impressionable stages in their development.
Even schools are no longer havens from marketing.
The food industry advertises in gyms, yearbooks, and playgrounds. They’ve succeeded in getting ads in school buses—and Ronald into school assemblies.
Corporations sponsor school curriculum, like the Oreo Cookie Counting Book, Skittles Counting Book, Pepperidge Farm Goldfish Counting Fun Book.
No offender is greater than McDonald’s, who has written the script on this tactic.  One McDonald’s first-grade program asks kids to design a McDonald’s restaurant and provides information about applying for a McDonald’s job. If your jaw is hanging open right now, you’re like me: I was stunned when I first learned about it. (Corporate Accountability International’s “Clowning With Kids’ Health” is a great source for more jaw-dropping examples).
McDonalds also has a long history of using charity as a form of marketing—and reaching kids. The corporation is a “platinum sponsor” of the 2013 Washington State Parent Teacher Association convention, for instance. Partnerships like this warm up the “gatekeepers”—McDonald’s own internal descriptor for “mothers”—to a brand that is a big negative for their children’s health.
Then there’s “McTeacher’s Night.” The corporation puts teachers behind the register for a night and, in exchange for their free labor and in-school promotion of McDonald’s, donates a percentage of the evening’s profits to the local school. Though dubbed as “charity,” McDonald’s is the one getting the real benefit: The typical take for schools is only about $800 or the equivalent of a Saturday morning car wash sans the junk food marketing. Meanwhile McDonald’s gets the benefits of associating with role models like teachers and parents. 

To make matters worse, other corporations are taking McDonald’s lead. McDonald’s supplier Coca-Cola, for instance, has the popular My Coke Rewards program, which offers points for Coke products purchased. Some PTAs are now pushing My Coke Rewards as a fundraising tool, and the Coca-Cola website has a prominent way to donate to your school. Never mind this essentially means turning school communities into a grassroots marketing arm for a corporation that made $8.6 billion in profits in 2011.
And yes, you can turn off the TV, but is that what kids are really watching? Kids and teens are now spending many hours online, on social media or playing videos games or interacting with apps. With hundreds of websites and apps, some targeting children as young as preschool age, the food industry has come to dominate many children’s social media and online experience.
Again, McDonalds’ is leading the way. Its attracts more than a half million unique visitors during the summer months when kids spend more time at home. The site features a host of advertising disguised as games, or “adver-games.” The site even features a virtual world for children to become immersed in. To unlock “all kinds of cool stuff” in McDonald’s virtual world (the “Happy Meal gone digital” to borrow from the web site’s description) kids are encouraged to frequent McDonald’s and look for special codes found on the Happy Meal’s “healthier” items (apples with caramel dipping sauce, Chocolate Milk Jugs). In other words, in order to maximize fun in this “free” virtual space, children are incentivized to buy Happy Meals. In McWorld, “where kids rule,” buying Happy Meals is the best way to obtain, “accessories for your avatar, treehouse, or interactive pets” and visit with popular movie, comic, and TV characters. 

Many of these websites also ask for personal information, sometimes requiring it for viewers to engage fully in a game or offering incentives for providing it. All this can go on without parents realizing it. McDonald’s, for instance, buries the line: “Hey kids, this is advertising!” in a small font in a tree branch in the upper left hand corner of its newly revamped online platform. 
Perhaps most pernicious of all, McDonald’s also pays people the public trusts to serve as “brand ambassadors” for the junk food corporation. Ahead of the 2012 Summer Olympics, for example, McDonald’s amassed a group of 400 food bloggers to write positively about the chain in exchange for “free gifts and parties.” In 2010, the burger giant provided 15 mom-bloggers an all-expenses paid trip in return for their trumpeting the brand to their networks. The corporation also enlists kid-favorite celebrity athletes like LeBron James and Gabby Douglas. 

So you see, you can turn off the TV—hey, you could even throw it out the window—and your kids will still be exposed to McDonald’s junk food marketing, from all-school assemblies to the internet. For kids today, marketing is ubiquitous—and McDonalds has been front-and-center in making it so. That’s why I’m joining moms everywhere today in calling on McDonald’s to set an example--and conclude five decades of setting a bad example—and stop marketing to kids.

You can join me by sharing the image above, adding your voice in social media with #MomsNotLovinIt, and taking action at

Monday, May 27, 2013

Free Blogger Opp: Canon T3i Giveaway

Mama Making Changes is co-hosting this Canon T3i DSLR camera giveaway!

Bloggers don't miss out on this incredible giveaway event!

Sign Up Now
and get a free link to
Twitter or Pinterest
just for posting and promoting the event!

Free Blogger Event!
Prize: Canon EOS Rebel T3i DSLR Camera with Lens Kit
Event Dates: June 5 - June 30
Free link for posting and promoting the giveaway

Cuddle Up Outdoors Giveaway

Cuddle up Outdoors Button

ARV $199
Hosted by:
This gigantic sleeping bag has quilting throughout and "cushioning around zipper and shoulder to keeps drafts out".  Built for two or more people. it has three sided zippering for easy access from either side.  This is roughly the size of a queen mattress so you can even fit the little ones in with you if you want!

Best of all there is a Oxford Compression Sack with Drawstring Closure to hold the sleeping back when not in use!  The "mummy style" hood holds pillows in place as you sleep!
M.O.O.N. Logo
 Teton Sports "was started in 2005 in Utah with a very long not-to-do list as opposed to the traditional to-do list. We do just a few things, but we try hard to do them well."  Their short but great list of products include sleeping bags, tents, bags/backpacks, cots, and a variety of accessories.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

"Make Our Own Network" solely organized this event and Mama Making Changes received no compensation for this publication. My opinions are 100% my own and may differ from your own or even those stated in this post. MAMA MAKING CHANGES is not responsible for sponsor prize shipment.
**If you are a company and would like to see your brand advertised in a M.O.O.N. event similar to this please contact

Thursday, May 23, 2013

March Against Monsanto

Photo: Image: Alternative Way
41 Countries, 330 Marches Global, 200.000 Participants!
Join your local March!
Refer to A Friend:
Full Info Sheet:
OUR Webpage:
Event List;
Official March Against Monsanto Song:
World Event MAP:
Courtesy of Alternative Way
I'm so excited to be participating in the March against Monsanto this Saturday! There will be people marching in protest all over the nation and even the world to prove that the people don't want what Monsanto is selling! Forty-one countries will have a total of more than 300 marches this weekend and the latest estimate shows more than 200,000 people will be participating! We will be driving a little over an hour to Columbia, SC, which is the march closest to us. 

Fore more information, click here to be redirected to the March Against Monsanto website or try these links:

Are you going to March Against Monsanto? Comment below to tell us where you are marching!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Decked Out Dads Giveaway

Mama Making Changes is happy to bring you another giveaway for Father's Day 2013!
Thanks to A Lucky Ladybug and Java John Z's for hosting this event!
Giveaway begins at 12:01 AM on 5/22/13 and ends at 11:59 PM on 5/23/13.

Hosted by
Co-Hosted by Tyrneathem and Funny Postpartum Lady  
Celebrate Fathers of all kinds this Father's Day!  Decked Out Dad's Day is all about Dad whether he's a traveler, a techie, the chef, or even the stay at home man!!  Make Our Own Network is thrilled to bring you over $1000 in gifts for Dad.  There are 6 packages worth over $145 each!

Monday, May 20, 2013

Meal Planning Workshop

The Holistic Mama Organic Skin CareIf you loved the 7 Day Real Food Challenge, the perfect follow up is the Online Meal Planning Workshop from Holistic Mama! 

The program includes 2 eBooks of recipes, access to an online community, a meal planning webinar, a meal planning binder that you will receive in the mail, and more.

Head over now to get the introductory price, which will increase on June 1, 2013.
 Click the link below to sign up or for more details.

Join The Holistic Mama's Online Meal Planning Workshop

"My Perfect Gift" Father's Day Giveaway

Mama Making Changes is happy to bring you another giveaway, this one just in time for Father's Day!

What's on Dad's Wishlist?

Enter to win a Canon PowerShot A400IS

Do you know what dad wants ?

        lets you buy the gift your loved one really wants to receive.
Have Dad create a FREE registry and you
will know exactly what to get him!

How to be Eligible to Win:

 Create a registry with at least 3 gifts or add to an existing registry.
  (Sign-up with one click using Facebook)

When you sign up please use “MESSYMAMA” in the “Referred By” box.

One lucky winner will receive a Canon PowerShot 16.0 MP Digital Camera!!!

Giveaway ends June 12th at 12:00 am. Winner will be announced on Father's Day.

Sponsored by:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

“Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one or more of the products or Services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog.  Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commision’s 16 CFR, Part 255:  “Guides concerning the use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

DISCLOSURE:  MAMA MAKING CHANGES has received no compensation for the giveaway and is not responsible for prize shipment

Friday, May 17, 2013

Top 25 Green Mom Blogs!

Thanks so much for everyone who voted for Mama Making Changes over the last few weeks. We did it! 

Mama Making Changes was voted one of the Top 25 Green Mom Blogs of 2013! 

I am very excited and honored to be on the list for the 2nd year in a row! 

Congratulations to all of the other blogger moms who made the list, too. Click the Circle of Moms Top 25 button in this post to see who else is in the Top 25. 

Thanks again!!!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

"Look Out Spring: Here She Comes" Giveaway

Welcome to the Look Out Spring: Here She Comes Giveaway! 

Hosted by: The Nurse Mommy
 Sponsored by: IzzyBee Creations 

Last week, I wrote a review of IzzyBee Creations adorable accessories that they sent for my Nugget.

This week, you have an opportunity to 
WIN some IzzyBee Creations Fandangle for your little one!!!

IzzyBee Creations is going to give one The Nurse Mommy reader an adorable spring themed headband and legwarmers set! We like to call it "Look Out Spring: Here She Comes!!"

Here are some pictures of her legwarmers in action, modeled by the little cutie!!!

One winner will receive the "Look Out Spring: Here She Comes" gift set.
Giveaway runs from May 14-31st.
Limited to US/CAN.
Winner has 48 hours to reply to notification email or another winner will be selected.
Please enter via Giveaway Tools Entry Form below.

Disclosure: Michelle from The Nurse Mommy received items in consideration for a review. No additional compensation was received for this posting. Our blog will always provide honest opinions, beliefs or experiences on products reviewed. We will only recommend products or services that we feel are of benefit to our readers. The Nurse Mommy and other participating bloggers are not responsible for prize fulfillment. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or any other social media outlets and are released of any liability as such. Links enclosed may contain affiliate links. If you have any questions, please contact Michelle from The Nurse Mommy at babagrlshell {at} gmail {dot} com

Blogger Opp: Decked Out Dad's Day - Blogger Sign Ups Open Now

This Giveaway Event is all about DAD!  Let's celebrate every father we know by getting the coolest gifts out there.  These will include everything from technology to sports or tools and of course manly pampering as long as its something dad would like!  Sponsors to be announced by 5/15.

Hosted by:

Sign-ups close 5/19
**The blogger with the most referrals will receive the additional links at no cost
so make sure you tell them Mama Making Changes sent you!
Click HERE to sign up and for more html info.

M.O.O.N. has now added several perks/discounts for frequent participation in our events but you must be a member of our Facebook group to be eligible.  Please visit the M.O.O.N. group if you are a blogger and would like more information regarding these perks and other group events.

Blogger Opp: Prepare 4 the Wild Giveaway SignUps Open Now

Grub Hub USA Camp Kitchen
(Certain accessories not included -only shown to provide possible functions)
ARV $380
Hosted by:

Sign-ups close 5/26
**The blogger with the most referrals will receive the additional links at no cost so please
tell them Mama Making Changes sent you when you sign up!
Click HERE to sign up and for more html info.
M.O.O.N. has now added several perks/discounts for frequent participation in our events but you must be a member of our Facebook group to be eligible.  Please visit the M.O.O.N. group if you are a blogger and would like more information regarding these perks and other group events.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Blogger Opp: Cuddle Up Outdoors Giveaway Sign-Ups Open

Teton Sports Mammoth Sleeping Bag Giveaway
ARV $199
Hosted by:

Sign-ups close 5/24
**The blogger with the most referrals will receive the additional links at no cost
Click HERE to sign up and for more html info.
M.O.O.N. has now added several perks/discounts for frequent participation in our events but you must be a member of our Facebook group to be eligible.  Please visit the M.O.O.N. group if you are a blogger and would like more information regarding these perks and other group events.
**If you are a company and would like to see your brand advertised in a M.O.O.N. event similar to this please contact

Global Warming Is Not A Priority For the US Government
Many nations around the world have made significant changes and have drawn up specific guidelines to limit their impact on global warming. The United States is not one of them. Known for many years as a world leader, the U.S. cannot seem to grasp the urgency of climate change. This is happening now! And for those that would shrug your shoulders and say "not in my lifetime so I'm not worried about it," that has now changed according to a disturbing article published by the New York Times over the weekend. 

In the meantime, don't wait on the government to tell you how to limit carbon emissions. Get to work on this issue yourself. Many small actions add up to a significant difference and that's what is needed to really make an impact on the rate of global warming. 

  • Open the blinds and turn off the electric lights during the day. 
  • Use cold water instead of hot whenever possible. 
  • Buy products with less packaging. 
  • Drive or bike when you are going a short distance, and carpool when possible if you need to go further. 
  • Consider living closer to work or school.
  • Be sure televisions and other electronics are turned off and unplugged when not in use.
  • Plant a tree or some shrubbery...anything with leaves.
  • Plant a vegetable garden or buy locally grown produce only.
These are just a few suggestions and all are easy. Don't think you can't make a difference because you can. Set an example for those around you. Explain to them your reasoning when they ask why you do it. 

Click here to read the New York Times article about global warming. I'd love to hear your reaction in the comments section below. Have some simple suggestions for limiting carbon emissions at home? Post those below also. I want to know!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Y is for Yellow

I hope the saying is true..."Better late than never." I am very late writing the last few posts for the A to Z Challenge. I got caught up getting several giveaways ready to launch for May 1. But excuses, excuses. How about a nice, light, mood-boosting post for the letter Y? I love the color yellow because it instantly brightens my mood. Yellow reminds me of sunshine and summer and other happy things. Here are some pictures to prove my point:

Photo courtesy of
Don't you just love yellow and blue together? I decorated most of my last house in variations of those two colors! 

  And you gotta admit that a big yellow smiley face is a happy thing!

Wouldn't you rather have this on your desk than the traditional black tape dispenser? So much cheerier!

photo courtesy of

When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade, right? 

And nothing says happy summer days like homemade lemonade! 

And what better pick-me-up than a new pair of shoes?! Especially if it's springtime and the shoes are YELLOW! I found these super cute Jessica Simpson wedges at (in case you are now considering a pair for yourself).

What else can you think of that is yellow and happy?

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Sponsor Spotlight & Review:

Recently, I was pleased to be given the opportunity to review the website for a leading magazine on ethical shopping. Ethical Consumer Magazine has been helping consumers make wise shopping choices since it was first published in 1989. A non-profit that relies much on volunteers, the magazine keeps readers up to date on boycotts, provides product guides and recent news about ethical products, and includes reader submissions, features, and more. 

Ethical Consumer's website,, features pdf versions of current and back issues for paid subscribers. The website also contains in-depth product guides for a wide variety of categories and an amazingly long list of individual product ratings. This is an amazing feature, my favorite part of the site! Ratings are based on five main categories:
  • Environment
  • Animals
  • People
  • Politics
  • Product Sustainability
Each of these categories can be expanded to see more specific categories, too. Readers are able to use a sliding scale to show how important each category is to your shopping decision. Then EC will customize the product ratings according to those choices! When I rated environment higher and politics lower I got one list, but when I changed my preferences the highest rated companies changed! They were being rated according to what's important to me! Love it! 

And subscribers have access to ethical ratings of over 10,000 companies, as well. Nike, for example, scored 6.5/20. Not so great. I typed in a few more company names: Pepsi scored a 4.5/20 and Proctor and Gamble scored only 0.5/20!

There is also an Ethical Shopping Directory, ethical shopping tips, and information on boycotts and campaigns, as well as articles and guest posts that are only available online. This website really has more features than I can list! Many, however, are only available to paid subscribers. 

At first I found a little difficult to navigate. After browsing for a while, I figured it out. There is just so much to see and so much information on this site that it is somewhat mind-boggling at first! I see myself coming back to this website often, not only to stay current, but to use the product guides and check company ratings. Head on over to check it out and look around a while. You'll be glad you did!

During the Green Moms Giveaway Hop, May 1-8, 2013, you can win a one year subscription to and get full access to this amazing website! Just click here to go to the giveaway and enter to win a subscription for your mom or yourself for Mother's Day.

Sponsor Spotlight and Review: GAC Sports Bottle Water Filters

I recently discovered an amazing new type of water filter that has me so excited!

GAC Filters are little teabag sized carbon filters that drop right into your water bottle. GAC stands for granular activated carbon, in this case coconut carbon. The carbon is encased in a mesh bag made from plant starch so the entire filter is biodegradable! That's right - NO TRASH! 


According to their website, the GAC Filter removes chlorine, chloramine, organic contaminants, taste, and odor. 

I love that I can finish the water and leave the filter to use again next time filI up my bottle - one filter is good for up to 50 liters of water because the mesh bag has mildew-proof properties. I have been using the same filter for several weeks now and it's doing a great job and holding up without any problems. 

You'll never need another filtered water bottle with little plastic pieces that need to be replaced periodically. And I despise the pitchers that filter water because the lid always falls when I'm pouring. Besides, it's a plastic product with expensive plastic filters that have to be replaced often. Just drop a GAC filter in any water bottle and fill it with tap water! 

 gac water bottle filter

If you aren't currently using a water bottle, but purchase bottled'll never need to buy bottled water again either! Americans buy millions of bottles of water each year and most end up in landfills. Switch to a water bottle with a GAC filter for a much more eco-friendly choice! 

I love being able to grab my empty water bottle when I'm running out the door to go to work or to the gym, knowing that I can fill it anywhere because my little GAC filter is sitting in the bottom! 

For a limited time, you can try a free sample by clicking here! Even the shipping is free! 

And that isn't all! GAC Filters has generously sponsored a giveaway here at Mama Making Changes! Click here to enter to win a $25 gift certificate to!

Green Your Mom Giveaway Hop

Green Your Mom GiveawayIt's time for the 2nd Annual Green Your Mom Giveaway Hop, hosted by Happy Mothering and Green Moms Network! I'm so happy to be a member of GMN and be able to bring this to you! 

Many blogs are participating and all have prizes valued at $25+ to help you "Green Your Mom" (or yourself) this Mother's Day!

Mama Making Changes has partnered with two sponsors for Green Your Mom for a total of approximately $75 in prizes!

Ethical Consumer Magazine is available in print and online. For full access to their website, including pdf versions of current and past issues of the print magazine and other wonderful features, you must be a paid subscriber at However, for the Green Your Mom Giveaway Hop, Ethical Consumer is giving one lucky winner a one year subscription for FREE! Read my full review of by clicking here.

GAC Filters are reusable filters for water bottles. Each carbon filter is about the size of a tea bag and is reusable for up to 50 liters of water. When it's time for a new one, the old one is compostable! GAC Filters is giving our lucky giveaway winner a $25 gift certificate to! Click here to read my full review of the GAC Filter.

Use the Rafflecopter below to enter to win both of these prizes for your mom or for yourself this Mother's Day! 

After entering my giveaway, be sure to visit the other blogs listed under the Rafflecopter form form for your chance to win more green mom giveaways.

a Rafflecopter giveaway