Reading Apps for Little Ones

threelittlepigs.jpg We all know our kids love to play with our iPads… most four year olds can navigate them like pros. Angry birds and games are fun, but how about some good old fashioned children’s stories? We recently were given the opportunity to sample a new app for kids from Nosy Crow, an independent company that publishes children’s books and apps. The new app, called The Three Little Pigs is an interactive story that boys and girls ages three to eight will love, and it’s in 3-D!
On the home page you have three choices… You can have the story read to you and a little bell will go off when it’s time to click the arrow to go to the next page. You can read the story yourself, great for the older kids who are learning to read! And there is a Read and Play option where there are blue dots on the characters that the kids can touch for them to say things along with the story, it’s adorable! There is also original music playing along that is cute and catchy.
Kids will have a ball when they flick the pigs to make them jump and spin, tilt the device to see more of the scene, tap the pigs to help them build their houses and so much more! There are lots of hidden surprises like spiders and a sweet little rabbit who wants to be friends with the pigs. You can download this app for $7.99 and keep your little techno-savvy munchkins entertained as they become immersed in this classic tale for the digital generation.
Disclosure: We were provided with a free promotional code to review this app.

Five Home Office Decorating Ideas

The Organized Mom shares more great tips on how to decorate your hom office in style…

iStock_000002002250XSmall.jpgIn my last blog post I talked about organizing your home office with style and functionality. Here are five more tips that I’m dying to share with you.
1. Meeting area – Place a small lounge chair and table in your office. This creates a multipurpose area for a business meeting or as a place to take a break for a glass of tea or a power nap.
2. Wall color – Office walls do not have to be boring white. Use an off white color such as Khaki to add sophistication while keeping the space clean, light, and calming during those busy times of deadlines and phone calls. Add accessories in bold colors that make you feel productive.
3. Greenery – Plants always warm up a room. If your decorating skills are limited, place at least two types of fake ivy in a decorative vase, weaving them together for a natural look. If you want real plants that do not require a green thumb, try English ivy. This plant tolerates indoor lighting and temperatures, and all it needs is a little water. Pick a nice pot in your favorite accent color and protect the surface of your desk or table from water spills.
4. Timer – If you have a hard time managing the clutter on your desk, use a timer to spend 15 minutes each morning returning items to their appropriate places. Do this again at the end of the day.
5. Special greetings – A great space saver for your office is SendOutCards. Instead of having a box of cards and stamps that you can’t seem to find when you need them, use this online service to send greetings to your clients. Create the card with just the right message and the company prints, stuffs, stamps, and mails the card for you.
I love style and I love function and with these great tips your office will now have both. Until my next post, get those home offices organized.
IMG_3957_retouched.jpgLorraine Brock is a professional organizer, family coach, speaker, and founder and owner of “Get Organized!” “Get Organized!” is a professional organizing company in the Dallas, Texas area. “Get Organized!” specializes in organizing and de-cluttering homes as well as implementing systems in the home for better family management.
A popular media guest, Lorraine has appeared on Dallas’ two top morning television shows: Good Morning Texas and Good Day Fox, and has been featured on various radio outlets. She has been hallmarked in many local, regional, and national print and online magazines, such as the Dallas Morning News, The North Texas Kids Magazine,, and Daily Candy Kids. To get more helpful advice from Lorraine, visit her blog Get Organized.!

Kids Recipe: Alma’s Crispy & Flat Carrot Potato Tator Tots

Just say “NO!” to greasy tator tots and make this healthier version….tonight!
P1060355.jpgCrispy and Flat Carroty Potato Tator Tots:
3 medium sized chopped, steamed potatoes
2 chopped, steamed large carrots
2 TBS softened butter
1/2 tsp salt, more to taste
1/2 cup crushed cornflakes,whole wheat bread crumbs,panko or any other kind of crumb
Add the butter and salt.
Mash with a fork or potato masher or whip but VERY briefly so they don’t get gummy!
Roll into one inch balls
Roll the balls in the breadcrumbs and lay on a parchment paper lined baking sheet
Makes about 25-30 balls
Spray the balls with olive oil spray and bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 1bout 25 minutes or until golden brown.
Flip over and bake another 5-10 minutes. Remove from oven and cool. Yum!
alma072V4WEB-1 (1)-thumb-188x220-2703.jpgAlma Schneider, LCSW, is founder of Take Back the Kitchen. Like TBK, this blog is dedicated to helping people recognize and overcome the common and unique obstacles to being everything they hope to be in the kitchen. She writes for Womens Day on line magazine, she is a featured Kitchen Coach Expert on and healthy food sponsor for

Russell Brand Chats with Role Mommy

West Coast correspondent Kristin Flannery gets the chance to chat with Russell Brand. Take a look…
chris and kristen photography-1103.jpgWhat a wild ride introducing Russell Brand to a new brand of media – Mom Bloggers! During the HOP press junket, we sat down to meet Russell and I got to sit next to him! Opening this Friday, HOP is the new live action animated film in which Russell voices the lead character, E.B. – that’s right, the Easter Bunny!
Russell Brand: Mommy bloggers sounds like a nice saying. What if people who say it become so incorporated into language, so people would just use it normally? “There’s a Mommy blogger outside! For heaven’s sake, help her!”
When shooting HOP, Russell had to voice his character alone in a sound booth without interacting with any humans…
Question: So, you weren’t with any of your co-stars? How was that, acting alone?
Russell Brand: Lonely. What we should have had is we should have packed that booth with Mommy bloggers to give me something to do and an audience to play to. Tim Hill, the director, he’s nice and he was encouraging to me. They stuck me in a booth and just left me in there. I was lonely. There were some carrots. They said it would help with the character. I don’t like carrots. I could see better, though.
Hop_Still2.jpgQuestion: When somebody comes to you and says, “We would like you to play the Easter Bunny,” as a comedian, do you say to yourself, “Now, that’s funny,” or do you think, “I don’t know about that.”
Russell Brand: I liked the idea immediately. As soon as they asked, “Do you want to be the Easter Bunny?” They didn’t even finish asking and I said yes. At that point, they could have said, “holidays, bonnet.” But it was “bunny” and it turns out it was the right decision. I liked it.
Question: Did you ever or do you now believe in the Easter Bunny?
Russell Brand: I believe in the possibility of all things because of the nature of infinite space. If the universe is infinite, that means, inevitably, all possibilities exist.
So, somewhere, there is an Easter Bunny. Somewhere else, there’s a one-legged Easter Bunny. Somewhere else, there’s a robot Easter Bunny. There’s an Easter Bunny crossed with a Darth Vader because of infinity. With infinity, everything would occur.
Yes, in real life or as the Easter Bunny in HOP…. Russell Brand is funny! Don’t miss him this Friday when HOP premieres in theaters. To catch a preview, visit where your kids can play games and you can find the theater nearest you!

Get Fit & Lose Weight in just 15 minutes a day!

Fitness Guru Becky Winner shares three exercises that’ll help you get fit in time for summer!
iStock_000008268946XSmall.jpgAre you one of those people who wish they could lose weight but feel overwhelmed by your current cumbersome daily life schedule? Family, careers, children, pets, and household chores tend to create a schedule whereby time to exercise may seem like it is not an option. Not anymore! There is no need to block off 30-60 minute sessions to exercise. In just 15 minutes a day, you can get your heart pumping, build muscle with full body strength training moves, speed up your metabolism and lose weight!
HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) is the way to do it. This type of training is done for short periods of time because it is so intense, and it keeps your metabolism churning all day! When my schedule is jam packed I use this form of training to ensure I get the most out of my limited time at the gym. It also helps you remain consistent with your fitness program even on those days you think you have no time for exercise or are just not in the mood. I like this form of exercise for those days you just don’t feel like working out as the allure of 15-30 minute workout often motivates me to push through!
Here is how it is done:
Sprinting, Jump Rope, think short intervals of intense cardio training interlaced with recovery stages. So for instance, you can jump rope one minute, walk one minute, jump rope one minute, strength train one minute. Continue this interval for 15-30 minutes on and off.
Another example would be sprint 1 minute, walk 1 minute; continue to repeat intervals of sprinting and walking for 15-30 minutes.
Remember, you must exert a ton of energy then recover for a short time…..hence the title High Intensity Interval Training!
A great combo of exercises I like to put together that include full body strength training, and great intense cardio are mountain climbers and bicycle crunches. I will perform each exercise for one minute switching back and forth between the exercises each minute. See below for videos on how to properly perform these exercises.
Mountain Climber:

Bicycle Crunch:

Want to work out with me and try a HIIT workout? Check out my NEW IPHONE APP and give it a try! You will be addicted!
Becky Wenner is a highly qualified multi-level certified fitness instructor. She is certified as an Adventure Boot Camp Instructor and Fitness Nutrition Coach by the National Exercise and Sports Training Association (NESTA). Rebecca also holds other training certificates including Personal Training Certification from the National Academy of Sports Medicine, and Group Fitness Instruction from the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA). She also holds her certification in kickboxing from AFAA and she is CPR and AED certified.

Role Mommy Fave Find: The Echo Smart Pen

imgres-16.jpegHere at Role Mommy, we’re always on the lookout for the latest greatest gadget to catch our eye and this time, it’s the Echo Smart Pen – a pen that enables you to take notes, record what you’ve written and share them via Facebook and email all with the touch of a button. And it’s even a calculator too. I know it may seem strange, but I am in love with my new pen. Take a look…

Ask Single Mom Walking

Dear Single Mom Walking:
My boyfriend has a favorite sexual position that is not abnormal per se, but not typical. I don’t like it because it requires a bit of flexibility (I’m 38) and I have to do most of the work. I want to please him but every time we are in bed together lately, that’s the position he wants to be in. What do I do?
Ouch, I think I pulled something
Dear Ouch I Think I Pulled Something:
Well, let’s give your boyfriend some points for his imagination, no? There is nothing like changing things up and a riding crop to keep a relationship healthy….uh, so I’ve heard.
Over and over again, I hear my friends complain how boring their bedroom time is because it’s just the same old, same old. I once dated a guy who was very into spicing things up. It was great, until his motivation died out and then, so did we.
Sorry, but, I wouldn’t eat chicken for dinner every night so why the hell would I want to “do it” the same way time after time? Perhaps I could if we were cast in the show, “So you think you can have sex.” Then I get the point of wanting to repeat the same routine. Certainly, I wouldn’t want to slip up in front of a live audience and panel of professionals with credits such as “Dina Does All of Downtown” or “Bob & Mary Get Licked.” Never mind how much I’d hate to lose because just when I was supposed lick his perineum he has me on all fours. I’m so competitive I’d never be able to look at a dog again and not wonder what could have become of my life had my partner just spread his legs and let me do my thing.
Of course it’s important for you to be comfortable but that is a slippery slope. You know how when you first meet a guy, you take the time to actually shave AND put on deodorant and then as the days go by you think he’s lucky that you’re still wearing your “good” sweatpants? Well, that happens in the sack as well. One minute it’s all about what makes the other person feel good and the next thing you know, you’re pissed because he’s still banging away five minutes into the premiere of “CSI” and he’s unhappy because in his mind, he’s now dating a corpse.
Perhaps you and your boyfriend could compromise. Maybe you can find a position where neither of you wakes up the next morning wondering if one of your limbs is still attached to your body as well as the need to rekindle your relationship with your physical therapist.
Another idea would be for you both to sign up for a yoga class or from your description perhaps, one that includes techniques practiced by every member of Cirque De Soliel. This way you are both happy and unhurt and who knows maybe you’ll learn about new positions that neither of you thought were humanly possible.
jessica bern 724 (1).JPGJessica Bern is a single mother to a 7yr old girl, a money sucking dog named Teddy and the ex wife of a man who left her for his mother. She writes at, where you she blogs all about it and where you can watch the Bernthis web series she created about a neurotic woman’s journey through her weekly visits to her therapist’s office. She also spends some of her time giving out sex/dating advice over at and has worked her vlogging magic with, Kodak and Seventh Generation.
For more from Jessica Bern, visit her blog, Bern This.

INTERVIEW: HOP’s James Marsden

Role Mommy West Coast Correspondent Kristin Flannery got the chance to meet James Marsden, star of the new family film HOP, opening in theaters April 1.
chris and kristen photography-1077_2.jpgIn the live action/animated film HOP, opening April 1st, James Marsden plays Fred O’Hare, an out of work slacker trying to find himself and instead finds… the Easter Bunny! We sat down with James and had a fun, candy filled interview delving into his family life, how he broke the news to his parents that he was becoming an actor and what it’s like acting with a stuffed bunny!
Question: Does having kids and being a dad enhanced his performance as Fred O’Hara in any way.
James: “That’s kind of me, really. I’m just sort of a perpetual kid, anyway. Yes, I think Fred essentially has that about him. He had that experience with the Easter bunny when he was a kid and that opened him up to believing in some sort of magic in a world that doesn’t have a lot of magic. I think that’s one of the reasons why he’s been such a slacker about getting a job because he’s always felt that there was something more special out there for him. Having kids myself, it mostly informed my decision to be a part of the movie.”
Question: Do you now take movies that will appeal to his kids?
James: “When I see something like this come along, I know I can go to the premiere with my kids and they will enjoy this. You feel that you’re doing one for them. It’s fun to be the goofball and do all the physical comedy and they’re my gauge, too. I think, “Okay. My son and my daughter think this is funny, so I’m going to do it in the movie.” They keep me very young.”
Question: An underlying theme in this fun kids movie is not living up to your parents standards. When you told your parents you wanted to be an actor, how did they react?
James: “I had a really special and unique upbringing, I guess. My father’s a food scientist. He studies E. coli bacteria and different ways to process and handle food. And my mother works in the food industry, but she’s in finance in this office.They realized that I never really was that passionate about much while growing up. I wasn’t really into athletics. I did become so later. I was a musician. I played a little music, I didn’t write songs. I just did it because I could do it and then once I discovered theater and music by doing musicals in high school, I realized that people were thought I was good. And I thought, “Oh, they think I’m really good and I really enjoy this.”
When I told my parents I wanted to move to LA, I was actually not surprised. I don’t know why I wasn’t surprised because if my kids did that I would think, “Oh, God, you don’t want to do this” I got really lucky.”
Question: Did they put in a stuffed animal for you in place of the rabbit?
James: “They will come out with a stuffed animal and block the choreography of where he’s going, so I get an idea of what I’m looking at and what he’s doing and then they will take him out and replace him with little pieces of green tape on little wires that stand up.You just feel so crazy. By the end of the day, you never go home. Normally, if you’re acting with other people in a scene, you think, “Oh, that scene really worked today. I felt good about that.” You never feel that way with this. You go home and think, “I just was a crazy person all day talking to myself.”

Don’t miss James Marsden, April 1st in HOP, and see how his world is turned upside down when the Easter Bunny hops into his life. To find out more, visit the official HOP website at

Mouse Droppings: The Tail Continues

white-mouse-on-skate-board.jpegIt’s been week three with Milford the Mouse and let me just say that the fumes that are coming out of that rodent’s cage should be prohibited by law. Milford has now been permanently banished to our mudroom – which unfortunately now smells so bad we may have to put yellow police tape across it so that nobody opens the door.
I’ve already gone through two air fresheners and we’ve been burning a candle to kill the smell. In fact, I was practically ecstatic when I received a special gift from my friends at Febreze – a brand new air freshener that purportedly smells like New Zealand. It does smell quite delightful but I’m going to have to take their word for it or will ask my friend Phil Keoghan, the host of “The Amazing Race” and a fellow New Zealander if in fact Febreze captured his country’s scent in a bottle.
But back to Milford. My son has been diligently washing Milford’s belongings, but no matter what we do, it seems to be useless. The poor mouse seems miserable and we’re at our wits end. If anyone out there knows how to kill the smell of a pet rodent, I will happily take any and all suggestions.

Cause Celeb: Charities Supported by A-List Stars

HaveUHeard takes a look at the bright side of Hollywood, sharing the important causes these top stars support
With celebrities usually making headlines for their craziness, shoplifting and their alcohol intake it’s nice to be able to focus on the positive side of celebrities and their ability to raise much needed money for some great causes. Below you will find a brief list of celebrities who are making a difference.
Sandra Bullock – Bullock has been known to step up in times of need – from donating money to the victims of Hurricane Katrina, to funding PSA for the Gulf Relief efforts. Recently she has donated $1 million to the American Red Cross for the victims of the Japanese Tsunami.
Brad Pitt – While helping with numerous charities and causes one of Pitt’s ongoing chartieis involves helping with the building of green, affordable housing on a large scale to help those families most in need after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. Pitt is responsible for the financing and constructing of 150 new houses in New Orleans’, rebuilding lives and communities with an emphasis on sustainability and affordability.
Elizabeth Taylor – HIV Activist/Humanitarian has raised more than $100 million over the past 30 years and her legacy continues after her recent death.
Oprah Winfrey – Has donated millions of dollars to various charities and organizations, with most of her money going to three foundations: The Angel Network, The Oprah Winfrey Foundation, and The Oprah Winfrey Operating Foundation. Oprah also has a will that will donate one billion dollars to various charities.
Bill Gates – While Bill Gates donates to numerous charities, he and his wife, Melinda started the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The foundation supports health and education around the world. As of 2009 the foundation is said to have donated more than $33 billion to the various causes.
For more celebrities and their great causes you can go to For more celebrity and gossip news, visit HaveUHeard and check out their new site, All Kids Are Celebs.