Safety Baby Magnetic Cabinet Locks Review

We recently were able to purchase our forever home, something I am crazy excited about. The house needs a lot of work, but it's a house that has been in my husband's family for generations. There is a lot of history there, and a lot of family.

What there isn't a lot of is just plain safety. His grandparents gave up on child-proofing many years ago...assuming they ever did. Things were different back then in a lot of ways. I'm not sure if insisting on furniture anchoring and baby-proofing drawers is making me the "normal" mom or the "paranoid" mom in the playgroup. Whatever. I can sleep easier at night knowing my kids are safe in our own home.

Child-proofing has certainly changed over the years, and has in fact changed quite a bit just in the last decade. Drawer latches used to be the go-to for keeping kids out of cabinets, but I really hate those things. First off, they're just a pain to get open sometimes. But more importantly, they still allow the drawer or cabinet to open a little bit. And that little bit is just enough room for my 2 year old to get his tiny little hand in. So how safe are they, really?

Now that we're babyproofing the new house, I am really loving the magnetic cabinet locks. Without the magnet "key", the cabinet will not open at all. Place the magnet in the right spot and it unlocks, allowing you to easily open the door.

Now, I'm not going to lie. I love these things, but they aren't exactly what you would call cheap. Safety Baby sells a pack of 4 locks and 1 key for $24.99. Putting them on every cabinet and drawer you have is probably going to end up costing a pretty penny.

I've chosen to use magnetic locks on cabinets and drawers that fit into one of two categories: the cabinets contain something poisonous/harmful or the furniture itself is antique. If I put these on the cabinets that I keep the household cleaners in, I don't have to worry that little hands will find their way in. And because these require no tool and instead use 3M adhesive tape, I don't have to put screw holes into some of our nicer pieces of furniture.

Because it uses adhesive instead of hardware, you do have to give it a full 24 hours to really harden and adhere. After doing so I've had no problems with them coming off. In fact, the adhesive is way stronger than I was expecting. Just make sure you give it the time!

Again, I couldn't imagine using them on every single cabinet or drawer we own because that would get expensive fast. If, however, you have drawers or cabinets that tiny hands absolutely can't get in, or if you can't put holes in the cabinets because you're renting, these are a great option.

You can check out Safety Baby locks on Amazon, where they are currently on sale for $24.99. If you want to grab a set, for a limited time you can save 10% with the code SAFETY10.

Zubels New Plush Collection Review


Zubels recently sent us another adorable toy in their lineup. This time it's a full-size plush! It's so hard to convey in words how soft and adorable this little guy is in person. This gray bear is 16", super soft, and already has been claimed by my son. There are some 'beanies' in the hands, feet, and tush to give it a little weight.  

You can also buy a matching hat for your child, which just looks adorable and I can only imagine how awesome those photos would be. 

Right now the Zubels plush line is a little limited as it is very new. You can get the gray bear, a brown monkey, or a white rabbit. They also carry a number of other toys, sweaters, hats, booties, and pants for children. Zubels prides themselves on their eco-friendly products. The toys I have from them are all very well-made and my children love them. Swing by and check them out here.

Organic Handmade Wool Dryer Balls Review and Giveaway!

I am much more focused on saving money and energy today than I was even a few years ago. The truth is, with every kid we have our budget is strained a little bit more, and living on a fixed (military) income means that we aren't easily able to make more. So we have to be smart about how we spend our money and look for ways to save a buck when we can.

I've really grown to love dryer balls because of the money they save me.

No dryer sheets? Money in my pocket.
Shorter dryer time? Money in my pocket.

Of course there are also the "crunchier" benefits: dryer balls are a healthier, more natural alternative. Adults and children who don't do well with the harsh chemicals in dryer sheets can use these instead without worrying about irritating toxins on their clothes.

Wooly Naturals wool dryer balls do a great job at keeping static away and saving me money. And if you like your laundry to have a nice scent, just add a few drops of your favorite essential oil to the dryer balls before use. I personally am loving the lavender!

These dryer balls in particular are 100% organic wool, and are pretty large. Supposedly they can last for years...a test which I am more than happy to attempt. With 3 kids, 2 of which are still in diapers, I go through a lot of laundry!

Which brings up another great point. Those of you who cloth diaper and aren't using dryer balls yet are missing out. Fabric softener can't be used on cloth diapers without affecting their absorbancy, but dryer balls are a great way to get the benefits of fabric softener without destroying your precious fluff!

This set of dryer balls also comes with an adorable sheep coin purse which, while not my style, my daughter absolutely loves

Wooly Naturals is sponsoring a giveaway for TWO lucky winners. Enter below, and good luck!

Not Quite Crunchy Mommy is not responsible for prize fulfillment.

An Exercise in Futility - Tie Review and Giveaway

When I found out my first was going to be a little girl, I was excited about dresses and bows and playing dress-up. When I found out my second was going to be a boy, I was a lot less excited about clothing options. Now that my son is almost 2, I've learned that there are tons of adorable options out there (though some styles still just aren't to my personal tastes).

My favorite?

When I can wrangle him into a little suit and tie. Little boys in suits and ties are just too adorable!

Which is why I was excited when Tiecoon sent me a tie for my son. We haven't had a chance to get family pictures done yet, but it's on my to-do list. And we already have the tie!

Unfortunately, up until this point the only ties he has worn have been clip ons. Hey, don't judge me - tying real ties is a pain! Well, now that I have a "real" tie for him, it was time to actually figure out how to tie one. Thank you, Google. You can easily find a bunch of tie tutorials online, which is basically what I did.

My son, however, was still uninterested in trying it on. I still need to pick up a nice dress shirt for him since he already outgrew the one he has, but at least I got it on him...for about 30 seconds.

The tie itself is a really nice tie, and for $6.95 I can't complain about the price either. This  necktie is a very short 'boy's length' of 48"(120 cm) and the width of the tip is hip and cool with a width of 2.5"(6cm). I definitely need to practice tying and getting a good fit on my son, but overall I am very pleased with it.

Now if only he would keep it on!

Tiecoon is also offering up a tie for one of my lucky readers! If you have a little boy you'd like a new tie for, head over to my Facebook page to enter!

Zipadee-Zip Giveaway 7/20-7/24

When we bring out little babies home from the hospital, most of us have figured out the swaddling thing. It's a necessity with newborns. That startle reflex keeps waking them up, and sometimes swaddling is the only thing that keeps them feeling cozy and safe. The problem is, what do you do when it's time to drop the swaddle?

For some babes it's a big adjustment, and they don't all take it well. Talk about a shock - one day they're being swaddled, the next they're going without because they learned how to roll over!

The Zipadee-Zip is a swaddle transition aid. It's basically a wearable blanket that allows babies to stay warm and secure, while getting them used to not being swaddled. It also helps keep babies safe by eliminating the need for blankets in the crib.

They come in a variety of cute and fun prints, and are hugely popular. At $36.95 these may not be cheap, but they are a worthwhile investment. It's a small price to pay for peace of mind and a good night's sleep!

You can connect with Sleeping Baby on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram.

Sleeping Baby is offering up a Zipadee-Zip for one lucky reader, just enter the giveaway below!

Not Quite Crunchy Mommy was not compensated for this giveaway and is not responsible for prize fulfillment. Giveaway will run from 12:00AM EST on 7/20 until 11:00PM EST on 7/24. Open to US residents 18+. Winner will be contacted by email and must claim prize within 48 hours. This giveaway is not endorsed by Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any other social media entity.

Baltic Amber Teething Necklace Review

Although I'm still not sold on the amber teething necklace for true teething relief, it's hard to ignore how many of you out there support them. Baltic Wonder is another player in the teething necklace game, and you can pick up their amber necklace on Amazon for $16.99

The necklace itself is very well constructed. The beads are smooth with no sharp edges. The clasp is a screw clasp. I would personally prefer breakaway clasps for small children, but the necklace itself does not appear to be so sturdy that it won't break if pulled on hard enough. Still, I would personally look for a breakaway option.

With amber teething necklaces there seems to be a big debate on which ones are "real" and which are clever fakes. This doesn't appear to be plastic, but whether it is truly baltic amber....well, I could not tell you. It does come with a little "certificate of authenticity", but I wouldn't put much faith in that.

The little certificate says "We guarantee that our products are made of 100% Baltic Amber with Succinic Acid and use the highest quality on the market safe for use on infants."

That's great, but a promise or guarantee from the seller isn't the same to me as a true certificate of authenticity. Them calling it a COA implies that another party has inspected and approved the product. That does not seem to be the case here.

Overall, it's a nice necklace, but those of you who are concerned about the authenticity may want to buy elsewhere as you won't be able to verify it as real or fake until you've bought it.