Thursday, January 21, 2010

Feel Better Reviews - Alex Puppet Set & Art Mats

This week, our family has been stuck inside with the flu.  The tough task is keeping my boys in bed and entertained.  I have a "sick basket" that I stock with coloring books, cards, games, and a few Power Rangers to help fight off germs. I even throw in a favorite stuffed animal and a light weight blanket. I stock our kitchen with "sick food" essentials like fruit popsicles, soups, mac n' cheese, crackers and juice.  I try and make the best of a bad situation.  Here are reviews on two of my favorite "stuck in the house" craft items.

The Puppet set by Alex includes five colored bags, 260 colorful stickers, one chunky glue stick, punch outs and simple illustrated instructions. The suggested age range is 3 and up.  The set is available at Target for $10.49.

Our family loved this product, and it makes a wonderful gift.  My boys spent hours creating these puppets.  Then, they enjoyed putting on shows.  The quality is excellent, and the designs are bold, colorful and fun.  Bravo!

Manage the mess of your budding artist with the Land of Nod art mats.  Even though my boys have a craft table in their room, they love to create on our dining room table.  Whether it's paint or play dough, they enjoying using these non-skid mats. I like that they keep the art off my table, and I can throw them in the dishwasher. The set includes a blue, red, green and yellow mat.  Combine with the puppet set (also available at Land of Nod) for a great gift!

Friday, January 15, 2010

TV Moms Don't Wear Black

As a real Mom, black is a staple of my wardrobe.  It's flattering and easy to match. I just grab it and go.  In TV land, Mom's don't wear black. I auditioned today for a national theme park commercial.  Instead of my brightly colored Mommy uniform, I decided to rebel.  It was cold outside, and I just couldn't get in the mood for khaki capris.  I figured nobody would notice.  I threw on a long black sweater, skinny jeans and black boots.  I was feeling pretty good until I walked into the waiting room.  One girl even kindly offered to give me her lime green tee.  I was told that I needed to give the clients what they wanted. Surely they could figure out if I was right for the part without me having to don the stereotypical tourist attire. I've been doing this for years.  Nope!  When I entered the audition room, I was asked to take off my sweater.  I politely  refused. Trust me. I  wouldn't get the job parading around in the skin tight camisole under my sweater (which by the way was also black).  I liked my flaw concealing, comfy black sweater.  This is what a real Mom looks like.  Deal with it. Needless to say, I don't think I'll be getting a call from my agent. :)

Thursday, January 14, 2010

The Reality of a TV Mom

For years, I've auditioned and worked as a TV Mom. I've dressed up in my khakis, denim button down and Keds. My hair was perfectly pulled back in a ponytail, and my nails were nicely manicured.  I'd show up relaxed and confident.  I'd bond with my "pretend kids" for a while. If they were unruly, I'd send them back to their real Mom.  I thought this "Mom thing" was pretty easy.

Five years ago,  my husband and I were blessed with our first bundle of joy. Just like his Mom, he entered this world with drama. He was due on the day Hurricane Charlie literally hit over our house, and he set the record at the hospital for biggest baby... 11 pounds, 4 ounces.  His brother arrived 3 years later.  Once again, drama.  At 9 months pregnant, I was in the hospital for 10 days with bronchitis and a cracked rib.  He made his debut a few weeks early (thank goodness!) at 10 pounds, 4 ounces.

At first, I tried to live up to this perfect Mom image that I'd created on TV.  I really struggled with it.   Now, I've learned to embrace our chaos. In fact, when things slow down for a second, I miss it.  I love the laughs, cries and tumbles of our two active boys.  We are a house full of non-stop antics. I still work as a TV Mom, but I bring reality to every part I play.  My hairs a bit rumpled, and it's a good day if I wear lip gloss.  I'm still working on losing the last of the baby weight. I might miss out on a few parts here and there, but the trade off is worth it.  Now, I'm a real Mom, and I'm proud of it.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


Thank you for visiting my site. I'm thrilled that you stopped by, and I'd love to hear from you. I welcome comments, tips, advertising opportunities and product submissions.

Media & PR

Please e-mail me for TV appearances, speaking engagements, product reviews, advertising and giveaways:

Booking for Appearances:
As a Mommy expert, I am available for television segments and speaking engagements. See my demo reel at
and contact me at

Product Reviews:
I'm always looking for exciting products that would benefit my readers.  If you would like to promote a product at Embraced Chaos, please e-mail me at
I do accept product submissions, and these products can be selected for television appearances as well. I will notify you if your product is selected for a segment.  Please include your company name and product information in e-mail.
I love to review:
Toddler / Child Items (especially for boys) - toys, gear, and clothing
Mommy products - beauty, clothing, accessories and health
Gifts for Mommy
Dining Out
Cleaning products, tools and organization

For Reviews:  I require a full-sized, new and non-returnable sample of the product. I am not responsible for any shipping charges.  Feel free to include press kits, high resolution photos and any helpful information that can be used in the review.  Also, let me know if you would like to include a discount for my readers. I will include a direct link to the company's website. Once the review is posted, I will e-mail you a link to the review. I (and my family) personally use and test each product.  If I can't give a positive review, I will contact you privately to discuss the matter. I won't publish negative reviews.

Please let me know if you'd like to advertise on my site. Sidebar ads are visible on all pages.  Placement is limited and must be family friendly.  Send me the html for a button, and I will link to  your home page.  I accept payment via Paypal.  Please e-mail me at
I will send payment information.

PR is always welcome.  I look forward to working with you!

This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me.  This blog accepts forms of cash advertising and other forms of compensation.  I do accept and keep free products, services and other items from companies and organizations. The compensation and items received do not influence the content of my blog.  I always give my honest opinion.  The views and opinions on this blog are my own.  Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service on this blog should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, company or independent expert.  If you have any questions regarding this disclosure, please feel free to contact me.
This policy is valid from January 2010.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


The Reality of a TV Mom

For years, I've played "the Mom" on TV commercials and print ads. I host a Simple Meals Cooking Show, and I've sold Mommy products on shopping channels. All of these adorable children in the photos above are not mine. Don't we look happy and calm? 

The Reality of a Real Mom

Now, I'm the real Mom of 2 boys. They are three and seven years old. The reality is completely different!  Our life is non-stop chaos.  I tried to live up to the image of the perfect Mom.  I tried to fight the chaos.  I've finally learned to embrace it.  I still make TV appearances as a "Mommy expert" and work in commercials, but now, I'm a real Mom. I know what it's really like!  As a chef, party planner and TV personality, I've learned a few tricks.  I also find out about the latest Mommy products.  I hope you enjoy our adventures as well as crafts, recipes, tips and reviews. 
Embrace the Chaos!

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