Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Let's Try Simply Delicious Dinners!

One day it hit me that I was going to have to decide what to make for dinner for the rest of my life. Sure, we'd have the occasional night out to eat, or maybe pizza or Chinese food, but for the most part, that lingering question would always be there. I've heard about services that send you meal ingredients or even recipe cards, but they all seemed kind of expensive to me for what you got. But then I was contacted by a new local business called Simply Delicious Dinners. They're based in Central New Jersey, and they provide ready made meals to their customers. They arrive frozen, and all you have to do is heat them up. Can you imagine how excited I was to try them out?


Monday, December 28, 2015

What is Greenberg's Train and Toy Show? A Jersey Momma Review

You've probably seen the ads or received postcards in the mail for Greenberg's Train and Toy Show.  It is held a few times a year, usually in the NJ Expo Center or the Garden State Exhibit Center (two different places, mind you, and I always confuse them!).  And if you have a little train lover (or even a big train lover) in your house,  you might wonder what this show entails.

We have been to the Greenberg Train and Toy Show several times over the years, and each time we go it's a little bit different.  So just a disclaimer to let you know that what I describe here might not hold true for every show.  What I can tell you about the show is just what it's like, in a nutshell, but keep in mind that each show might feature different vendors, attractions, etc.

Mr. Jersey Momma helps the boy get a better look at the trains.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Kawaii Box Review and Giveaway!

In Japanese pop culture there is a term for everything cute, and that term is KAWAII! Sanrio characters like Keroppi frog and Hello Kitty were a huge part of my childhood.  Even today I have a hard time resisting Kawaii items in stores (pencils with smiling bunny tops, puffy food stickers with little eyes and noses drawn on them- need I say more?).  Kawaii is an art form, and it's one that my heart appreciates.  Mr. Jersey Momma says it's one thing he doesn't understand, but what does he know?  Anyway, if you happen to have the same Kawaii obsession that I do, you might appreciate this fabulous service called Kawaii Box.  Read all about it below, then enter to win a Kawaii Box of  your own!


Monday, December 14, 2015

A Review of Roadside America - What's Inside?

Somewhere in your travels between New Jersey and Pennsylvania (especially on your way to or from Hershey from Central or Western New Jersey) you might have noticed a little place by the side of the road, aptly named Roadside America.  Have you driven past there, wondering, what exactly is Roadside America?  Well, now you can find out!  Come with us as we visit Roadside America in Shartlesville, Pennsylvania!


Monday, December 7, 2015

A Review of the Planetarium at RVCC: The Alien Who Stole Christmas

Last year I purchased a Groupon for the Planetarium at Raritan Valley Community College.  This is literally a stone's throw away from where I live, and after reading about it online, I figured it might be fun to try.

What is the Planetarium at RVCC?

Raritan Valley Community College is located in Branchburg, not far off of Rt. 78, 287 and 22.  It's very easy to get to.  The planetarium offers star shows, laser light shows and an observatory open on select days for viewing.  My review is based on one of their public star shows, The Alien Who Stole Christmas, which is offered throughout the month of December.

What is the Planetarium Like?

The Jersey Momma's Boy was four when we took him to the planetarium.  He loved the idea that he was going to a college campus, and it was exciting for him to see the college buildings, the planetarium, and the dome of the observatory.  Upon entering the planetarium, you'll see what looks almost like the tunnel of a spaceship.  My son was in awe of this!


You'll check in at the lobby, get your tickets, shop if you like (there is a very small case of souvenir goodies you can buy if you're so inclined).  The Jersey Momma's boy was fascinated by the coin drop- one of those giant contraptions where you throw your coins in and watch them spiral to the bottom:


Once you venture into the "space tunnel," you can view some space displays and glowing windows of space facts.  The lights are pretty dim once you get through that tunnel, preparing your eyes for the planetarium itself.  I don't have any pictures for you from here on in, because the lighting was not really suitable for photos.

The Alien Who Stole Christmas

The planetarium doors open a few minutes before show time.  It is important to note that once the doors of the planetarium are closed, they cannot let you in, so don't be late to your show (they suggest you arrive 20-30 minutes before show time).  Also, if you need to leave to use the restroom, they cannot open the doors to the planetarium to let you re-enter, by order of the fire marshall.  So do your business before you head in there!  The show itself is cute, but a little hokey.  Don't expect superb graphics and computer animation. These are just cartoon images projected onto the ceiling, narrated by your host of the show, who is in the room with you, reading into a microphone.  The story revolves around some aliens kidnapping Santa, but it's nothing scary and recommended for ages 6-10.  My son was only 4 and he was okay with the show, but not all little ones are the same!  Think ahead to what your child will like best.  The seats are comfy enough, and they are tilted back so you can look up at the giant pseudo-sky without hurting your neck.  The whole show runs about 40 minutes.

What You Need to Know
  • This is a planetarium, so it will be dark.  Sometimes, very dark, as you need to be able to see the night "sky" above you.  If your little one has issues with the dark, just keep in mind that this might not be the right event for them.  If you have to leave during the show, just remember that they won't let you back in.
  • As of the publication date of this entry, tickets are $8 each, or you can watch two shows for $14 on the same day
  • They recommend that you call ahead to reserve a seat, although there are no assigned seats once you enter the theater
  • This was a great learning experience for my son.  He was able to experience a real planetarium at a low cost and learn a little bit about the solar system in the process.
  • We once attended a different show in the summer and it was a nice change on a hot day, perhaps an alternative to a movie?

Jersey Momma Tips
  • Be on time!
  • This is a small planetarium on a college campus, so as I usually say, don't expect it to compare to larger, more costly planetariums in museums.
  • If you think the Alien Who Stole Christmas might not be right for your child, check out what else they have to offer.  There are other star shows and music laser light shows, too, all of which look like a lot of fun.
  • The planetarium also offers events for children with autism.  Check their event listings page for more details.
  • Head over to their Facebook page or sign up for their email list for more information.



Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Picture Book Month: Making Pupcakes for A Dog is a Dog by Stephen Shaskan

Did you know that November is Picture Book Month?  Here in The Jersey Momma household, we're picture book enthusiasts.  I have so many picture books that they're overflowing down the stairs (and some are even stored in boxes in the basement!).  So I am more than excited to join my fellow bloggers in celebrating this fantastic event.  Many thanks to Krystal of Healthy Happy Thrifty Family for inviting me to participate!


Monday, October 26, 2015

More Cookie Decorating with Sweet Dani B

You might recall me writing about Sweet Dani B in the past, praising her amazing cookie decorating skills and fun workshops.  I was fortunate enough to attend her Summer Cookie Decorating Workshop in Asbury Park, as well as previous Valentine and Christmas workshops in Flemington.  She never ceases to amaze me.  Take a look at the fun we had during Sweet Dani B's Halloween 15 Monster Mania Cookie Workshop at Porta Pizzeria in Asbury Park, New Jersey.  Then make some plans to attend one of Dani's workshops  yourself!


Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Fall Fun: Let's Visit The Last Fling Pumpkin Sling

When it comes to Fall fun, you can find it all- pumpkin picking, apple picking, hayrides, corn mazes, apple cider, cider donuts, haunted hayrides- you name it, we've got it, and within local driving distance too, for the most part.  But if you're looking for something a little, say, unique this Fall season, why not give the Last Fling Pumpkin Sling a shot?  (ha!  That was a play on words and I wasn't even trying!)


Wednesday, September 30, 2015

The Jersey Momma: Let's Try Enjou Chocolat!

Every now and then I like to give a shout-out to local New Jersey businesses, especially when you can find their products outside of New Jersey, too.  I had the opportunity to sample some chocolate from Enjou of Morristown, thanks to the fine people over at Chocolate.org.  Yes, yes, I might have received my chocolate for free, but I swear to you that I would not recommend something to you that I totally didn't love!!


Thursday, September 17, 2015

Baby Mantra for Sensitive Skin: A Quick Review and Giveaway

I was recently contacted by Baby Mantra to see if I was interested in reviewing their gentle, personal-care products.  My first thought was, 'Sigh, The Jersey Momma's Boy is not a baby anymore! He's seven!' But they were quick to point out that their products are not just for babies, but for children (recommended for aged newborn to 8) and can be very helpful for children with sensitive skin, which just so happens to be The Jersey Momma's Boy.  So I agreed to try their line and let them know what I thought.  And for the record, even though this is a sponsored post, I would not suggest you try a product that I didn't approve of myself. That's not how I roll!




About Baby Mantra

Right from the source:  "Baby Mantra’s earth-friendly range of extremely gentle personal care products for children (newborn to 8 years old) are made with all-natural skincare ingredients. Baby Mantra products have been certified by the Natural Products Association (NPA), are gluten-free, allergy-tested and cruelty-free.
You can find Baby Mantra products across the country at Babies R' Us retail locations, and stores like Albertsons, Jewel Osco, Walgreens, Duane Reade and Meijer. We recommend using the store locator on the company's website to find a store nearest you. In addition, Baby Mantra can be found online on websites such as Amazon.com, Babiesrus.com (and retail stores nationwide), Drugstore.com, Walgreens.com, and Diapers.com.
You can read about the founders of the company here. You can also follow and like Baby Mantra on Facebook. On a side note, I totally love their pretty logo. :)



Baby Mantra's Products

We tried Baby Mantra's 3-in-1 Bubble Bath, Shampoo and Wash. I, personally, loved this because it literally does three jobs in one! What more can a momma ask for? A little goes a long way- we just needed a small drop to give us lots of bubbles. The Jersey Momma's Boy wasn't crazy about the smell, but I thought it was gentle and soothing- a touch of lavender gave it a really fresh scent without it being overly 'baby scented' (I didn't want my seven year old to smell like baby powder- well, at least I didn't think he'd want to smell like baby powder!).


It has some terrific ingredients in there like lavender oil, aloe vera and honeysuckle. It's allergy tested, cruelty-free and vegan. It's also NPA certified and gluten free! The Jersey Momma's Boy had no itchiness, dryness or ill-effects from the Baby Mantra 3-in-1 Bubble Bath, Shampoo and Wash. Two thumbs up from us! It left his skin soft and smelling wonderful.



If you prefer a shampoo separate from the 3-in-1, try Baby Mantra's Newborn Shampoo and Body Wash. Again, great smelling like the Bubble Bath (very similar scent between the two). The scent is also not over-powering, which is nice! But let me tell you why the Jersey Momma's Boy loved this. It was low foaming, which made it easier to rinse out of his hair and off of his skin. He hates rinsing his hair and getting water and soap in his eyes. This was such a natural product that it easily rinsed clean and left no residue. Kudos for that, Baby Mantra!!


We also tried out the Baby Calming Lotion. Lord knows the Jersey Momma's Boy could use some calming! Hee hee. But honestly, I was eager to try this one because The Jersey Momma's Boy tends to get itchy skin, especially after baths, and is prone to little rough and bumpy patches. The calming lotion contains oils and natural extracts, so the consistency is a little bit thinner than some lotions I know. This is great for babies because it won't leave a greasy or heavy feeling on their delicate skin. But this might have been a little too thin for The Jersey Momma's Boy, who ran off to bed yelling, 'My butt feels squishy!' after using this.


I loved the pump feature of this lotion, since it can be difficult with a newborn or infant to juggle a bottle of lotion while trying to apply it!

We also tried out Baby Mantra's Detangling Conditioner. Again, a great, fresh smell since it's made with coconut oil and lavender. If you are using this on an older child, they won't be smelling like baby powder! I loved that it was made with all natural ingredients, especially the shea butter, which is one of my favorite scents. Just like their other products, it's NPA certified, gluten free, allergy tested and vegan! Some other conditioners we've used leave hair a little bit limp, and this one did not do that. I also noticed a shininess after using it, which was an added plus!



I was psyched to hear that Baby Mantra will be coming out with a sunscreen. This is something we totally need, since The Jersey Momma's Boy can only use one very expensive sunscreen on the market right now, since all others seem to give him a skin rash. We're counting on you, Baby Mantra!


Where to Buy

As stated above, you can use Baby Mantra's online store locator to find the products near you.

Want a coupon code? Of course you do! If you sign up for their newsletter, you can earn free coupons each month. Want to win some of their awesome products? Visit The Jersey Momma Facebook page to sign up for the Baby Mantra giveaway!

You can follow Baby Mantra on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, so go show them some love!

Disclaimer: I received this product for the purpose of this review, however, I am not compensated for writing or obligated to write anything specific. These are my own opinions and they have not been influenced in any way by Baby Mantra. And you know I wouldn't recommend anything I didn't love myself, right? Okay, glad we got that straight.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

The Best Adult Coloring Books

The best adult coloring books can really work wonders. If you're looking for a relaxing, quiet hobby (you, yes you, not your kids, not your family, you!) then adult coloring books might be right up your alley. Coloring in coloring books was always fun as a kid. Now there are coloring books geared towards adults, with more complex patterns and more 'grown up' illustrations.You can choose whatever medium you like (it doesn't have to just be crayons!). Colored pencils are my medium of choice at the moment. Sharp ones! They say coloring is a stress reliever and a great way to find some 'quiet time.' It's also something you can do with your kids, in your own way.

Here are some of my favorite picks for adult coloring books. I've included some affiliate links if you want to jump ahead and purchase them, too! If you like these choices, be sure to check out my other posts about the Best Adult Coloring Books and Mediums, Part 2!


Wednesday, June 10, 2015

A Robot Birthday Party and Robot Party Favors

The Jersey Momma's boy is a big fan of robots.  He specifically loves the movie Wall-E and all of its crazy characters, so when he asked if he could have a Wall-E Robot themed birthday party this year, I thought, why not?  If you recall, we had an Art Themed Party for his 5th Birthday, and that was a huge hit!


Monday, June 8, 2015

A Cookie Decorating Workshop with Sweet Dani B

Have you ever been to a cookie decorating workshop?  Sounds appetizing, right?  Actually, I love anything titled a 'workshop' because I get an immediate picture in my head of little elves or Santa or something.  But add the word 'cookie' in there and I'm DEFINITELY in!  So come with us for one of the best cookie decorating workshops around, with none other than Sweet Dani B herself.


Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Science Experiment for Kids and Toddlers: Moving Food Coloring!

Sometimes I actually enjoy a rainy day (sometimes, I said, sometimes!).  I love that temporary change in weather- the sound of rumbling thunder,  the hint of rain in the air.  If I were alone I could curl up and read a book or watch a good movie with some snacks.  But of course I'm never alone, I'm a momma!  So there's usually a bored kid tugging at my shirt tails.  So here's a quick science experiment you can do to pass the time.  You can create a swirling rainbow of your very own!



What you'll need:

-milk (not skim, must be 2% or higher)
-liquid food coloring
-dish soap

Fill a shallow bowl with milk (I put the bowl on my handy dandy kid tray- I tell you, I use that tray for everything!!).  You can also see my son's Wall-E robot joining us for this experiment in the background.


Pick the colors you want to use and add a few drops to the milk.  My son went overboard and added a lot of drops.  You can't see it in the picture, but at one point he squeezed so hard I thought he emptied the dye bottle.  Although this amount of food coloring still works, I think you get a "swirlier" effect with less drops.  He wouldn't listen to me, but I'm hoping you'll concur.


Now here comes the fun part.  Drip a few drops of liquid dish soap right into the mixture and watch it swirl right before your eyes!


It will actually move and swirl for a good amount of time.  And when it's finished we decided to mess around and see what else would happen, so we added more milk, more dish soap, more color, etc. to see what effects we could get.

And hopefully by the time you're done with your science experiment, the sun will be shining and you can head back outside again!

*If you're looking for a handy dandy art tray of your own, check out my Amazon affiliate link below!

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Best New Jersey Day Trips (and Pennsylvania, too!)

New Jersey is a fun place to live because of its proximity to so many fun theme parks, state parks, beaches, shops and more.  As the weather turns warmer, we often search for fun weekend adventures, so I gathered a few of my favorite day trips in one place for you to see.  Some are outside The Garden State (but not too far outside, just Pennsylvania!), and some are completely free.  Check it out!


Thursday, April 30, 2015

A Review of the Lehigh Valley Zoo - Let's Go!

If you love visiting New Jersey zoos, like Turtle Back Zoo, Popcorn Park and Bergen County Zoo, you might enjoy taking a short trip across the border to the Lehigh Valley Zoo in Schnecksville, Pennsylvania, just outside of Allentown.



Where is Lehigh Valley Zoo?

Located off of Rt. 78 from New Jersey (and Rt 100 in Pennsylvania), this zoo might be a bit of a hike depending upon what area of Jersey you are from (Hunterdon county folks might not mind the trek, whereas those in Northern NJ might find the distance trying with kids!).  Check out their map and directions to determine its distance from where you are.



How Much Will it Cost Me?

The zoo is open year round and their admission prices change depending upon when you visit.  Children under 2 are always free, and regular ticket prices vary between $8 - $13 based on season (as of the publication date of this entry).  They also offer senior discounts and group discount rates, too.  Parking is free.  Woot!

Prairie dogs!!

What Will I See There?

According to their website, The Lehigh Valley Zoo has "approximately 300 animals representing 104 different species."  They list them all on their website, and some of them are quite different than what you'd find at New Jersey's Turtle Back Zoo.  What does Lehigh have that Turtle Back doesn't?  Let's see, just to name a few, there were zebras...


Camels...

"That camel was THIS big, momma!"
A Kookaburra!!!  (I am a huge 'bird nerd' and was so excited to see this Australian native here!!).  The Kookaburra makes such an amazing sound.  I stood there for ten minutes, waiting for him to 'laugh,' but he never did.  Oh well, I still love ya, guy!

"Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree..."

What's Special About the Lehigh Valley Zoo?

One of the best things about the Lehigh Valley Zoo (in my humble opinion) is the natural setting and the ability to get fairly close to the animals for viewing.  I especially liked the little walk-through area to see the wallabies up close.


And this emu looks so inquisitive, but we kept our hands clear just in case (remind me to tell you about the time we saw a boy get nipped by an emu on a preschool farm field trip...)


The penguins looked like little boys in tuxedos...



Okay, so I zoomed in with my camera. Maybe you can't get quite as close to these animals as these photos let on, but it's still pretty close.

What Else Can I Do at The Lehigh Valley Zoo?

So glad you asked!  There are some cute stops in between the animal viewing.  There's a fun little playground...


A bird feeding and walk-through area (swans, ducks and waterfowl feeding area as well as an exotic bird area walk-through)...


There is a petting zoo/barnyard feeding area, but the Jersey Momma's Boy thought these goats were a little too friendly.  Ha!


There are paddleboat rides (but call ahead for availability, because we went during the week and the paddleboat rides were closed)

And there was even a horse-pulled wagon ride, too (although I can't find anything about this on their website so I'm not sure if it's still available).

There is a cute garden area with 'insect friendly' areas and a 'pizza garden' with different herbs to view.

You can crawl inside an empty 'wolf den' (of course the Jersey Grandmomma had to climb in there, too!)

Watch your head, Jersey Grandmomma!

Where Can I Eat at The Lehigh Valley Zoo?

They actually had a good selection of food here, or you were welcome to bring your own food and picnic at any of their benches or picnic tables.  They had plenty of snack bars, ice cream and drinks to buy along the way.  Prices were reasonable.  My one complaint about their website is that it tells you nothing about their food and what they offer, or if the food stands are open year round.

Other Jersey Momma Tips

*Like most zoos, there is a lot of walking.  So bring the strollers if you need them (or you can rent them at the entrance) and a good pair of walking shoes.  Paths are well paved and open.  There are some up and down hilly areas to traverse, but nothing overly steep or tiring.  There are shady spots and sunny spots, so if you're going in warmer weather, you can find some areas of relief (and plenty of places to sit down).

*There are two souvenir shops- they are small but they offer a cute variety of things.

*The zoo has plenty of family friendly events during the year, so be sure to check their website or Facebook page to help plan your visit.

*There are restrooms located throughout the zoo and they have baby changing areas, too.  Not the most sparkling, newest bathrooms you will ever see, but they were clean enough!

*Bring your camera!  Do I even need to tell you that?


Friday, April 24, 2015

Crafts for Toddlers and Kids: Easy Marble Painting

Although I enjoy making crafts and doing art activities with my little one, let it be known that I don't like cleaning up a big mess (really?  A mom who doesn't like messes?  What a surprise!).  So when I choose art projects I try to pick things that are easy set up and easy clean up (just see my posts on EASY DIY Play Dough and EASY DIY Chalk Sand Art!).  Marble painting was one of those crafts for us.  Quick and fun, the clean up wasn't too bad and the mess was pretty self-contained.


Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Easy DIY Squishy Play Dough

I know a lot of people out there complain about 'Pinterest moms' and don't see why it's necessary to go baking  your own play dough when you can just buy it in the store.  The truth is, you don't have to do this. No one's twisting your arm.  I really do this stuff because I like it.  It's fun for me.  And my little guy loves experimenting and creating, too, so this is right up his alley.  I also can assure you that I'm all about easy crafts and easy fun.  This recipe for DIY play dough really is easy.  Trust me.



You Will Need:

-1 cup flour
-1 cup water
-1/4 cup of salt
-2 tsp cream of tartar
-2 Tbsp vegetable oil
-food coloring (about 4 drops or to your liking)
-wax paper or parchment paper

Step 1.  Put all of your ingredients into a heavy duty pot and stir them up.

Step 2.  Put the pot on the stove and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until a soft dough forms.  As soon as it forms into a ball, remove it from the heat and dump it onto some wax paper on your countertop.  Wait for it to cool and then begin to knead it until it's soft (this is where the little hands come in, just make sure it's cool enough for them to touch).

It kind of smells like pizza when you're making it...
When all of the color is spread throughout and the dough is nice and squishy, it's play time!

This dough is cool because it's so squishy!
That paint splattered thing is a placemat!
Storage:  When finished you can store it in a gallon size ziploc bag or in ziploc containers.  It will keep for a long time if it remains sealed.  I can't tell you exactly how long, but I know we had ours for a while!  This dough also makes a great little gift for someone.  Check out HowDoesShe? for great tutorial pictures and ideas on gift packaging!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Easy Pasta Primavera Recipe

I'm always in search of easy, healthy recipes. I'm a lazy cook and I hate chopping vegetables and preparing the meal. Don't get me wrong, I know it's important to eat healthy, I just dread putting effort into it (isn't that terrible of me?). Anyway, here's a simple recipe I found for those who are slowly trying to transition into a healthier lifestyle or for anyone who needs a quick, healthy meal that tastes good, too.  It's also a great meal to make for company.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Why Professional Family Photos are Worth It: A Visit with Sunny Bunnies Portraits

I'm embarrassed to admit it, but I hate being photographed.  Can you tell?  It's hard to find a shot of me, the real Jersey Momma, anywhere on this site.  I like candid shots- ones where I am laughing or not looking at the camera.  I am hard on myself.  I am my own worst critic.  So I think this is the reason why I never bothered to have professional photos taken of The Jersey Momma's Boy or our family.  I thought, I can take my own photos!  I don't need a professional photographer!  But you know what?  I regret that decision and I'm going to tell you why.  I was recently contacted by Nadia of Sunny Bunnies Portraits in Washington, New Jersey.  She asked if I'd like to come in for a mini photo shoot, to see what her studio was all about. So I thought, why not?



Where is Sunny Bunnies Portraits?

Nadia's studio is based in a cozy little room of her mountain top home in Washington, NJ.  But she can meet you on location somewhere if you work out the details with her.  She takes photos of newborns, babies, and children (but she will take family photos, too!).  Nadia is sweet and friendly, and even The Jersey Momma's Boy, who can be very shy, seemed to feel comfortable in Nadia's home.

Sunny Bunnies Portraits Studio - photo courtesy of Sunny Bunnies Portraits

What is a Professional Photo Shoot Like?

I can't speak for all photographers, but Nadia was warm and welcoming.  She was kind to The Jersey Momma's Boy and talked to him in a soft voice during the photo shoot.  Although she specializes in babies and newborns, she also enjoys photographing children, families and siblings.  She had a slew of adorable props for us to choose from, and she put care and thought into picking out the right props and how to set up the photos.

It was a challenge to keep The Jersey Momma's Boy from slouching during his session!

Nadia also had some adorable outfits that her clients could dress up in if they desired (The Jersey Momma's Boy wanted nothing to do with hats or suspenders or anything of the sort, and that was okay, too).  But the little girls' dresses?  Oh, my!  Precious!!

The Jersey Momma's Boy didn't mind holding some fake Spring flowers for his photo shoot

What Are My Options for Professional Family Photos?

I remember going to Sears when we were kids and awkwardly posing with my sister (The Pirate Cupcake lady!), but we've come a long way since then!  If you're not comfortable going to a photographer's home, you can also go on location somewhere, like local parks or lakes, to get some beautiful natural shots.

Nadia also took the time to make a Pinterest board for me of ideas, so I could look through them before the shoot and decide what kinds of images we hoped to capture.  There were so many cute ideas!  Posing with toys, seasonal props, black and white, close-ups!  So much to choose from!  Here are some of the sweet poses that Nadia came up with for The Jersey Momma's Boy:

When The Jersey Momma's Boy saw these, he said, "I look so handsome!"

Can I Afford a Professional Photographer?

Nadia occasionally offers specials at her studio, so check her website or Facebook page for options.  At times, some photographers (including Nadia at Sunny Bunnies) will offer mini sessions around the holidays, so be sure to ask what package options and prices are available.


How Do I Get My Photos?

Sunny Bunnies sent us all of our images via Drop Box.  The images are ours to keep and we can take them anywhere we want to print them.  Each photographer is different, but Nadia usually sets up online galleries for her clients (not always DropBox, but some method of online file sharing).  She can also provide a CD of images if you prefer.


Are Professional Family Photos Worth It?

So this is the initial question I started with, and here I am to tell you why these photos are so important.  I have said before, especially in the About Me section of this blog, how much I cherish time and every moment we have.  As the momma, I am the one who takes most of the photos in this family (and with my cell phone, no less, so the image quality is not always great!).  But that means I am also not in a lot of the photos.  I know a lot of moms out there will agree, you have a million pictures of your children, but not many of you, or you with your children.  Am I right?  And since I am always avoiding the camera, the memories of me with The Jersey Momma's Boy are not being documented very well!  So remember that.  You deserve to be in the pictures, too.  You, momma, are beautiful.  And these moments?  These days of baby cheeks and pudgy legs- they go by in a flash, in a heartbeat.  You look back and think, where did the time go?  Having a professional image of such a special time is a true treasure.




Disclaimer:  You can find Nadia at Sunny Bunnies Studios on her website or Facebook page. Sunny Bunnies provided us with a complimentary photo shoot in exchange for documentation of our experience with her.