Weight Watchers I Hear You Calling…

images-8.jpegIt’s funny. Every time the weekend rolls around and I indulge in one too many things that wind up adding a few more lbs. on my digital scale, I find myself back to square one. The only thing that’s ever going to really get my butt in gear is my old faithful – Weight Watchers. Lucky for me, they’re actually one of the sponsors of this Thursday’s Swiffer SocialLuxe Lounge so maybe I’ll get the inside scoop on their latest program and hopefully, they’ll have a few of those smart ones desserts on hand so I don’t partake in the delicacies Jenn at Hostess with Mostess has ordered for the blogger partay of the year!
Incidentally, I recently tried one of the latest Weight Watcher Smart Ones creations – the peanut butter sundae. Let’s just say it has now become one of my top three Smart Ones desserts, followed closely by the brownie sundae and cookie dough sundae. And lets not forget about those ice creams – love the ice cream cones, chocolate sandwiches, mint chocolate chip and turtle fudge sundae packs too!
Okay – maybe I’ve discovered the root of my problem. I have a bit of a sweet tooth…ya think?

Music to My Nose: Pets on a Plane

images-9.jpegA few days ago, my good friend Kim at Traveling Mom informed me that a new airline has just launched where pet owners can finally take their best friends along on their vacations.
Pet Airways is catering to animal lovers who don’t want their animals to spend a long and turbulent flight in the plane’s cargo area or in a carrier next to a pretty perturbed person who is ticked off that they have to endure an entire flight next to a dog with a bowel problem.
And let me just say, a private airline for animals comes as welcomed news for me. Recently, I took a flight to Los Angeles with my mom, daughter and mother-in-law. While the airline, Virgin America was pretty amazing — cheap flight, good food, wifi, movies galore and TV options for my daughter — there was a bit of an accident in flight. No, we didn’t lose an engine, a bird didn’t hit the windshield, we didn’t lose air pressure, and a baby wasn’t crying incessantly during the flight. Instead, my fellow passengers and I were subjected to something we all will never forget. You see, a young couple decided to bring their brand new puppy on the plane with them. And while that didn’t sound so bad, when the flight attendant informed them that they had to put the dog in a carrier, they looked at her with fear in their eyes and explained that if they do, the puppy could have an accident (and no, we are not talking about #1).
Luckily, the flight attendant convinced them to put the dog away for take off and then they allowed them to hold the dog on their lap. And that’s when the turbulence hit. My heart went into my stomach and as I held my daughter’s hand, a noxious fume began wafting overhead. It appeared that during that shaky patch, the puppy freaked and exploded all over seat 20B. To make matters worse, the owner grabbed the dog and raced to the bathroom while his little deed was left on the seat. And yes, the passengers in seats 20A and 20C were completely and utterly grossed out. Since I happened to be sitting next to the dog’s other owner, my maternal instinct kicked into high gear and I instructed that she grab several paper towels from the bathroom, wet them, grab a fistful of hand sanitizer and clean up that mess stat.
Thankfully, that girl ran like the wind and wiped away the evidence as the other passengers stared at her in complete disgust. We then spent the next two hours of the flight hoping that puppy wouldn’t experience another accident and once we landed, I think the dog’s seatmates must have run at top speed off that plane.
Ironically, on the way back to New York, we boarded the plane and realized my mom had drawn the short straw. I dare you to guess her seat number. Give up? 20B.
All I can say is Pet Airways couldn’t have arrived at a better time. Because at least if there’s a doggy disaster, their seatmate can offer a paw and bark in canine solidarity, “Sorry dude, poop happens.”

The Find’s Fave of the Week

Gear Up for Potty Training
Arm yourself with everything you need for successful potty training. Start with a potty seat that is comfortable for your child. My recommendation for a potty seat is the Baby Bjorn Toilet Trainer. It adjusts to fit any toilet seat and has a rubber ring to keep it in place so that it won’t slip. It is made of one solid piece of smooth plastic so there are no sharp edges. There are plenty of different types of seats to choose from. Find one that suits the needs of your child and yourself.
Next you will need some “tools”. Here are a few of my favorites:
BooksSometimes it takes awhile to get the job done. Books help keep your toddler entertained while on the potty- hopefully long enough to make something happen. Books on the potty training topic are particularly helpful and can be read to the child prior to starting the training process to gear up.
Potty Charts Children do well with positive reinforcement. Track their progress with stickers and reward them when a goal is reached.
Training Pants Go old school with cloth training pants and a plastic cover for faster results. Your child will feel when he/she is wet and will likely learn a lot faster.
Potty Training Doll– a potty training partner in crime!
M&M’s When all else fails, bribe them!

The Busy Moms Fave Five

Hello Busy Moms! Looking to be brought up to speed on the day’s events from the world of TV, music, food and blogging? Well, then you’re in luck with today’s fave five.
1. Michael Jackson never-before-seen Pepsi video. While on the elliptical this morning, I flipped on the Today Show and caught an interview with US Weekly editor in chief Janice Min who shared footage of Jackson’s hair catching fire during that now famous Pepsi commercial shoot that actually propelled Michael into a life of addictive plastic surgery. According to Min, Jackson wore his one white glove because he was battling vitiligo and his dermatologist – the same guy who allegedly is the father of Jackson’s kids, was by his side when his hair and scalp were burned. Check out the exclusive video from US Weekly. Pretty graphic and scary!
2. The PR Blackout blogger debate. It all started on MomDot. A suggestion that bloggers take a week off from reviewing products and doing giveaways so they can blog about what excites them or maybe take a break and spend time with their families. And within 24 hours, there was backlash aplenty from other bloggers, PR firms and mainstream media. One of my favorite writers, Liz Gumbinner posted this powerful essay on the BlogHer site and then, even Newsweek weighed in!
3. Big Sale on Sunscreen at CVS! It’s July and I don’t know about you, but we’re running low on sunscreen. And as luck would have it the folks at CVS.com are running a huge sale on their sunscreen and skin care items. From July 11-26 CVS.com is having a Web exclusive sale for their store brand sun care items that offers shoppers a 30% discount on all sunscreens, sun blocks, lip protectants and many more beach and skin essentials. In addition to fabulous products, CVS.com also has a health learning resource center, with interactive quizzes about sun safety and skin cancer.
4. Healthy Recipes from the Mojo Coach. I don’t know about you, but as much as I want to lose weight, the hardest thing I struggle with is not preparing healthy foods to keep me satisfied. Today, our very own Debi Silber posted a blog featuring healthy recipes that are easy to prepare. So I guess I’ve got no more excuses.
5. And the Emmy Nod Goes to... If you’re a TV fanatic like me but was too busy getting your son ready for day camp, then you might have missed this morning’s Emmy nominations. Well, let me make your life simple and provide you with some conversation starters this weekend. USA Today Online features all the nominations, the shows that were snubbed, and the ones that finally got an Emmy nod.

My Cheesy 80’s Playlist

Thanks to the fabulous tween website JAM, I discovered a very cool application from a site called Mixpod where I can create my own playlist and embed it on my blog. Now here’s the cool thing – when I searched the site, I found nearly every cheesy 80’s and 90’s tune I could think of – plus classics of course and this is what I came up with. Get ready to step into your time machine and start singing!

MySpace Playlist at MixPod.com

Incidentally, if you’re the mom of a tween, then turn them on to JAM – it was created by the head of Wilhemina Kids who has a series of books for tweens coming out this fall and it’s an inspiring site that features stories by real tween reporters.

Ready for My Close-Up with SnazL & ELF Cosmetics

Hey Role Mommies – I’m getting the chance to host my very own web show this Thursday at 2pm with the help of SnazL.com, a social communications widget that lets you create a virtual party and enables you to interact while you’re watching; and ELF cosmetics – who is featuring stories of their favorite female bloggers (yes, I am one of them 🙂 on their site!
My interview (part of a series leading up to the ELF Blogher party) goes live at 2 pm EST this Thursday at SnazL, as well as other sites who have chosen to host it. And that’s where you come in. We’ll be chatting about reinvention, writing and doing what you love and whatever other topics you’d like to throw my way. Anyone can watch, (no registration needed) but if you’d like to chat, interact and possibly win one of the five $25 ELF gift cards, sign up at www.snazl.com prior to the chat.
If you’d like to host this show on your site, please click on the share button and grab the code from the video below. Starting 2 pm EST, the SnazL will automatically go live on your site. At 2:15 pm, we’ll feature the host giveaways, followed shortly by chances to win 3 more $25 ELF gift cards. If you’re like me and love great make-up products that work beautifully on your skin without breaking the bank, then ELF is for you.

If you’d like to host the show on your site, please grab the preview code on the video above and embed it on your site! If you do, you’ll be entered to win one of 2 $25 ELF cards.
Just enter a link to your blog with the help of the McLinky widget and let us know you’ll be taking part in the fun. Hope to see you there!

The Busy Moms Fave Five

We know you’re swamped and while you may want to read something interesting, who has time to thumb through a magazine? We’ve got your solution. We’re showcasing some of our talented moms in the Role Mommy community who have been sharing their personal expertise and prose on on our site and we’ve also uncovered some fab finds of our own! Get ready to be inspired, informed and entertained!
1. In her essay On Palin and My Public Apology, My Work Butterfly.com Co-founder Bradi Nathan offers up a public apology to a member of her community after she shared her true feelings on the Michael Jackson memorial hoopla and she also weighs in on Sarah Palin’s resignation. It’s a high charged essay you won’t want to miss!
2. Struggling with Arthritis? Well, Melinda Winner has just written a book about how to cope. She shares her story as well as tips from her new book, Cooking with Arthritis on the Role Mommy blog.
3. Are you a parent of a twin and struggling to decide whether to enroll them in school together? Well author Kathryn Whitely shares this top 10 list on the reasons you should.
4. Wear Yellow and Get into Madame Tussauds for Free!!! Live in the tri-state area and struggling to figure out what to do with your child during the dog days of summer? Well, Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum has just unveiled a new exhibit featuring one of the most favorite Nickelodeon characters of all time! To celebrate the launch of its newest wax figure – SpongeBob SquarePants – Madame Tussauds New York will offer kids 12 and under FREE admission, if their family comes to the attraction dressed in yellow, from Wednesday, July 15 – Friday, July 31, 2009, Madame Tussauds New York, 234 West 42nd Street (b/w 7th & 8th Aves.), Manhattan. SpongeBob is the first animated character to receive a figure made entirely of wax by Madame Tussauds, which worked with Nickelodeon to create the figure in honor of the SpongeBob’s 10th anniversary.
5. If you’re like me and spend the day surfing the web while working, then you are definitely going to want to try out ThisMoment – a new site that instantly enables you to load photos, video and your own words as you share a personal story of a special moment in your life. Blogger and entrepreneur extraordinaire Ciaran Blumenfeld recently shared her ThisMoment story in anticipation of the upcoming Swiffer SocialLuxe Lounge red carpet style event next week in Chicago, and I was instantly hooked!

A Little Link Love

Before I finally head outside so I can enjoy this beautiful summer day sans kids (yes, day two of my weekend and I’m free all day!!!), wanted to share some great links I found featuring bloggers in the news as well as link love to some must read and must see posts!
Are Mommy Bloggers Cashing in?

Dangers of Texting & Driving
The Mummy Chronicles uncovers hilarious Kate Gosselin Video
Looking for great vacation tips? Here’s your one stop shopping for fabulous summer getaways.
Where Social Media and Shopper Marketing Merge to Reach Moms