Parentville Gift Ideas & Be a Good Valentine

Parentville.com

For Valentine’s Day, we have some more great gift ideas below for kids and parents; and, check out the full list here!

We also invite you to nominate a deserving parent to win a Lela Rose Limited Edition Quinny Buzz Stroller! If yours is the winning nomination, you will receive a sterling silver bracelet and teething ring from Momma’s Jewels, at $115 value!

Click Here for the details to sign up, nominate and vote!

Momma's Jewels 1-Ring Sterling Silver Bracelet

VALENTINE’S DAY GIFT IDEAS

Below is just a sample of the great gift ideas our parents are talking about:

Half Pint Citizens

Half Pint Citizens is a great store in Brooklyn at 55 Washington Street, and they have a loaded website with a range of eco-friendly, educational and inspirational clothes (and casual shirts), toys, feeding, bathing and decor items.

Check out this Tutu and Polka Dot Slippers for Valentine’s Day!

Essential Tutu - Half Pint Citizens Polka Dot Julius Youth Slippers

Custom Silhouette Charm Necklace

Love & Victory Silhouette Love & Victory Bow and Arrow Necklace

Love & Victory’s Custom Silhouette Charm is a great find from our friends at Mamaista.  Simply send in a photograph of your child’s profile and Love & Victory will make you a charm to match with his or her name – for a necklace or keyring. They have a beautiful bow-and-arrow necklace in sterling silver for the holiday, too!

Jellycat Beige Bashful Bunny

Jellycat Bashful Bunny

Incredibly soft and super sweet, this 12+ Jellycat bashful bunny will be your child’s new best friend.  Makes a great early Easter gift, too!

If you use code PARENTVILLE10 you’ll also receive a 10% discount!

Amy Lehmann Designs

Amy Lehmann Jewelry

Perfect for special Valentine, Amy is a mom who creates modern custom works of art incorporating your vintage treasure, honeymoon souvenir or personal keepsake. Guaranteed to be a conversation starter, these precious and semi-precious pieces are individually expressive and destined to be treasured! This might be a good IOU gift for Valentine’s Day.

The Healthy Pantry

We’ve mentioned The Healthy Pantry before, we are sending a reminder! A gift card or set of kits from this online store would make a fabulous gift for a busy parent.

You choose from a variety of boxed recipe kits filled with pre-measured, natural and organic ingredients that combine to create wonderful breakfast, lunch, dinners and snacks.  All you do is provide some of the main ingredients like meat, butter, and eggs!

Use code PARENTVILLE for 10% off!

Family Movie Review: The Tooth Fairy

tooth-fairy-poster-0.jpgYesterday afternoon, I took my kids and one of their friends to see “The Tooth Fairy” with Dwayne Johnson. And while I’ve never really paid attention to why movies are released in January, versus the ones that are released during the summer or closer to the holidays, I now know why. January movies are duds. There, I said it.
Case in point. A few weeks back we were invited to see a screening of “The Spy Next Door,” with Jackie Chan. It seemed pretty cute and I thought it would be an enjoyable film for the entire family. I should have known better. Don’t get me wrong – my kids loved it. But they also loved “Shark Boy and Lava Girl.” Me on the other hand, well, I had a hard time understanding Chan and the evil Russian villains and while the action was great, if they had showed the movie with subtitles, I probably would have enjoyed it more. But this wasn’t a foreign film.
All kidding aside, when we were pulling up to the movie theater yesterday to see “The Tooth Fairy” my son chimed in from the back seat – “Can we see “The Spy Next Door” again???” To which I replied, “No way.” Somehow I think there’s a Spy Next Door DVD in our future with our name on it.
And now for the main attraction. We arrived at the theater pretty early and were the first take our seats. Note to theatergoers – if you enjoy going to the movies and not dealing with crowds, then always hit the movies early in the day. Anyway, we got our popcorn, sat down, watched a ton of previews for family films and decided I’d like to see the following movies in order of popularity:
Percy Jackson and the Lightening Thief
Diary of a Wimpy Kid
A Dragon Movie by Dreamworks (forgot the title)
I can’t remember the rest because at the precise moment the movie was about to start, three women came charging down the aisle with more than 10 kids under the age of five and they decided to sit down directly behind us. Of course, the theater was completely empty but they opted to take the uncomfortable elevator personal space approach. And to make matters worse, these kids were chatty. And they kicked seats. We must have given them at least half a dozen icy stares before I let out a huge “SSSSHHHHHH” and then my husband blurted “Don’t make me come back there.”
Back to the movie review. Let’s put it this way, if you are comparing Dwayne Johnson’s body of film work in order of favorite to least favorite, I believe “The Tooth Fairy” comes in dead center. My favorite film with Johnson is “The Game Plan” – I loved everything about that movie and even cried at the end. Then I saw him in “Escape to Witch Mountain” and pretty much could have done without that viewing. And “The Tooth Fairy,” well they have an incredible cast – from Ashley Judd, to Julie Andrews to Billy Crystal and I did enjoy watching them in the film even though some of the dialogue was chock full of cliches.
The gist of the movie is simple – a dream killing hockey player whose nickname is “The Tooth Fairy” because he’s known for knocking out people’s teeth, tells his girlfriend’s daughter that there’s no such thing as the tooth fairy and she’s crushed. He then gets a summons under his pillow to report for tooth fairy duty and for two weeks he must repent by retrieving teeth under the pillows of unsuspecting kids.
The scenes where Johnson is using all kinds of crazy methods to break into people’s houses was quite funny and there is a nice twist at the end that makes the film incredibly corny and endearing at the same time. Anyway – while “The Tooth Fairy” is no Oscar contender, it did get a thumbs up from my family.
To find a theater nearest you, visit my favorite online destination…Moviefone!

Giveaway Central

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We’re here to announce our winners in the potty training contest. The grand prize goes to Caryn Bailey at Rockin’ Mama and are runners up are Liz for Princess Potty and Carrie for Pirate Potty. Thanks for entering and more great giveaways to come!
Since I’m always a sucker for anything having to do with helping parents get their kids potty trained, I am quite excited to offer a special giveaway to frazzled moms and dads everywhere!

Get ready for Pirate Potty and Princess Potty – two books that provide a helpful, step-by-step story that introduces girls & boys to the concept of toilet training. Pirate Potty is a pirate-themed, toilet-training book that is fit for the little swashbuckler in your life! Pirate Potty includes a pirate’s hat and reward stickers and Princess Potty follows the same theme…a toilet-training book that is fit for the Royal Highness in your life! This book includes tiara and reward stickers!

So how do you qualify for this giveaway? Simple. Just comment on this post with your potty tip or disaster and the best piece of advice or confession wins. Here’s what we’ve got to offer:

One (1) Grand Prize winner receives a Prize Pack including:
$30 Target Gift Card
Plus a copy of both books!

Two (2) First Prize winners receive:
Copy of both books!

The giveaway will run for two weeks starting today.  And if per chance you want to check out my personal tips on how to potty train your child, then visit Parentdish today for my lol advice.

Sweepstakes Advantage

A Family is Just a Family Trailer

I’ve been hearing all about the new documentary by Rosie O’Donnell that’s airing this weekend on HBO. It’s called a Family is Just a Family and judging from the trailer, it looks like it’s going to be a great film to watch with your kids.
Incidentally, I recently got the chance to see Rosie O’Donnell perform in the Nora Ephron and Delia Ephron Broadway Show, “Love, Loss and What I Wore.” While America may know Rosie best as a talk show host, I have to say, she is an incredibly gifted actress and I look forward to seeing her tackle more roles in the coming years!

See Mom Run Makes the Chicago Tribune

Screen shot 2010-01-29 at 8.02.13 AM.pngStop the presses! We’ve got our first official break in a major newspaper – The Chicago Tribune. Sure I’m a publicist and I should have had See Mom Run plastered over the New York Times and USA Today but guess what? It is very difficult to break through – hence this wonderful placement three months after our publication date! But no matter. That’s the whole trick to success. You keep rolling that boulder up the hill and hopefully, someone who lives in Chicago (Oprah can you hear me (sung to “Papa Can You Hear Me” From Yentl) will be reading today’s paper and say to her producers – hey, we need to book those funny mothers on our show!
Anyhoo, if you’d like to take a look at the story, then please visit and enjoy! And if you haven’t ordered See Mom Run yet…well what are you waiting for??? It makes a great Valentine’s Gift for Moms!!!
And a little footnote…I’m thismuch closer to Oprah. Check out this Friday Follow recommendation on Twitter. She can hear me, she really can hear me!
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Introducing: Role Daddy!

Thumbnail image for eric.jpgThis column has been a long time coming and I am so proud to announce that we have just added a fabulous guest columnist to Role Mommy and it’s none other than Eric Ruhalter, the author of TheKidDictionary.com, contributor to NJ.com and all around hilarious writer. Eric and I go way back – we met before we had kids when we both worked at CBS and we re-connected last year when I found out about his foray into the world of humor writing. So without further ado, let’s get right to Eric’s first post!
BIG MISSKATE by Eric Ruhalter
I want to apologize to any and everyone who attended the 10 AM open skating session at Morristown’s Mennen Arena two weeks ago last Sunday. I was there with my kids on our first-ever ice skating expedition. It had the makings of a wonderful and beautiful start to our post-holiday winter season. And that should’ve been evidence enough that this was going to be a disaster. It was. My son Crosby, for whatever he lacks in speed and agility thus far in his development, he makes up for in determination, always striving for excellence.
However, in the rink, and elsewhere, when striving for excellence, Crosby often takes the shortcut of blaming his shortcomings or failures on others. Ice skating the first time is extremely challenging. Evidently that’s my fault.
“WHY’D YOU MAKE ME FALL”
“I didn’t make you fall. I didn’t even touch you.
“WHY’S IT SO HARD TO SKATE!?!?”
“A great many things in life are difficult at first but if you stick with it, you’ll….”
“I DID STICK WITH IT, AND I STILL CAN’T SKATE!!!”
“well, we’ve really only been here for 10 minutes…”
“THIS ICE IS TOO SLIPPERY!!!
“Well, … yeah…”
But you have to celebrate small victories. And in this instance, unfortunately, it was my own small victory. I managed not to get upset with him for being so impossible and so flippant. After all, I wanted to set a good example. I wanted to make this a positive experience for him. Not to mention there were any number of grownups in the rink who may well have DYFYS on their cell phone’s speed dial.
So Crosby kept trying to skate and kept wiping out with all the grace and composure of a drunken rodeo clown. At one point he was sitting there on the ice, seething so hard I thought he was going to melt the rink and we were all going to drown, The skate guard with his hockey player haircut and his fancy black skates comes careening over with a shooshing snowplow stop right beside us to check on young Crosby. “Are you okay there little man?”
To which Crosby replied very succinctly and very loudly and without a trace of thanks for his concern, “GET AWAY FROM ME YA STUPID !!!!”
The guard skated off, I helped Crosby up yet again, wiped some of the snow off his back, and we had it again.
And I reminded him again, “It’s really really hard to skate!” It can take a long time to learn to do it at all And just as I imparted that little bit of wisdom, suddenly we hear from the center of the rink, “Look Dad!” As Crosby’s twin sister, also a first-timer, is skating backwards.
It was a maddening experience there for a while, but I appreciate young Crosby’s determination. I think once he learns a little patience he’ll be able to achieve anything he sets out to achieve on the rink and in his life. But man does my back hurt.
Eric Ruhalter lives in Morristown, New Jersey with his wife, Kara & 3 rambunctious children. Eric is the creator of The KidDicitonary – A Book of Words Parents Need To Describe Their Kids. For more of his wit and wisdom, except for wisdom, amuse yourself at www.TheKidDictionary.com.

Role Mommy Deal of the Day

Screen shot 2010-01-28 at 4.55.21 PM.pngToday’s deal of the day goes to my favorite online grocer, Fresh Direct. I’ve been one of their loyal customers for awhile now and I have to say that everything from the produce, to the freshly prepared meals to the 500 calorie entrees that you can cook in four minutes or less have been my saving grace in my quest to lose the same 10 pounds I’ve been trying to shed since my son was born (he is now seven years old).
Screen shot 2010-01-28 at 4.56.10 PM.pngA few weeks ago, the folks at Fresh Direct asked if I’d be interested in sampling a few of their newest low calorie entrees and since I had already tried the whole wheat vegetarian meatballs and spaghetti and the Tabla Shrimp with brown rice and vegetables (both are quite yummy), I decided to give the Mexican Lasagna a try. And while you may think that Mexican lasagna seems to be an odd combination, it’s actually quite good. Not only was the portion size pretty filling, but the dish is made with three layers of corn tortillas, earthy black beans, fire-roasted corn, spicy tomato salsa and reduced fat cheddar cheese. Now here’s the best part – it’s only 370 calories!
FreshDirect’s ready-to-heat-and-serve meals are available under three culinary brands: Smart & Simple, low calorie dinners, EatingWell vegetarian meals, and Tabla, New Indian cuisine. Go to www.freshdirect.com/4-Minutemeals.com to find out more about this exciting line of healthy and quick entrees.
According to FreshDirect, their 4-Minute Meals use an innovative seam-steam system and specially designed microwavable packaging that preserves the juiciness of the high-quality meat and crisp freshness of premium vegetables and herbs. Ready to heat and serve in just 4 minutes, every dish is just the right portion size and is healthy and satisfying.
For more information on FreshDirect’s 4-Minute Meals go to www.freshdirect.com!
And here’s another piece of great news from Fresh Direct – soon you’ll be able to order your groceries from your cab, car (if you’re not driving) and commuter train with a new, free iPhone application. Delivering virtually all of the functionality of FreshDirect.com, the free application will allow customers to create new orders, modify current orders and view FreshDirect’s daily seafood and produce ratings. Stay tuned for more info on that front as soon as the app becomes available! Incidentally, I even ordered Fresh Direct for my family from Seattle – I guess the next frontier is Mars.
DISCOUNT TIME! Now for the fun part, if you’ve never ordered from Fresh Direct, here at Role Mommy we’re going to share a one time 20% discount on all the meals in the 500 of fewer section of their site: Just Click on the Fresh Direct link enter the Promo Code below and you are good to go! The discount is available from now until February 28, 2010.
Promo Code: FDMEALS
Live Dates: 1/28/2010 to 2/28/2010

Disclosure: I received one free entree to review as part of this blog post.

LOL Clip of the Day

Was riding in a cab today, saw this video and laughed out loud. In fact, I was having so much fun watching it that my cab driver kept turning around to see what all the commotion was about. Take a look and get ready to crack up.