Saturday, January 28, 2012

1/28/12: Kirkland's Seafoam Mosaic Ruffle Pillow - WIN ONE!

I love decorative pillows.  How pretty can they make a couch or bed look.  I was fortunate to receive this beautiful Ruffle Pillow which matches perfectly with our couch. 
As one of my lucky readers you have the chance to win a Seafoam Mosaic Ruffle Pillow from Kirkland's.
Details on the Pillow:
Pillow measures 18”x18”
Made of 100% polyester
Faux silk fabric
Elegant, rosette appliqué
A little more about Kirkland's:
Kirkland’s is a leading specialty retailer of home décor in the United States, operating approximately 292 stores in 30 states. Kirkland’s was co-founded in 1966 by our current Chairman Emeritus, Carl Kirkland. We opened our first store in Jackson, Tennessee and have grown steadily thereafter.
Their stores present a broad selection of distinctive merchandise, including framed art, mirrors, candles, lamps, picture frames, accent rugs, garden accessories and artificial floral products. Their stores also offer an extensive assortment of holiday merchandise, as well as items carried throughout the year suitable for giving as gifts. We provide our customers an engaging shopping experience characterized by a diverse, ever-changing merchandise selection at surprisingly attractive prices. Their stores offer a unique combination of style and value that has led to our emergence as a leader in home décor and has enabled us to develop a strong customer loyalty.
You can also visit:
Follow them on Twitter:  @kirklands 
Like them on Facebook:
Here is how to Win your own Seafoam Mosaic Ruffle Pillow:
1 entry for each item:
Mandatory Entry:
- Go to the Kirkland's Website and tell me what products you like best?  (comment section at the bottom). Note if you are logging in anonymously please include your email so I can contact you.  Make sure you see comment posted.
Additional Entries:
- Like Evan and Lauren's Cool Blog on Facebook and then comment here that you did.
- Once you Like Evan and Lauren's Cool Blog on Facebook share the link to Evan and Lauren's Cool Blog on Facebook.
- Grab my Blog Button and add it to your site and comment here you did.  +2 entries 
- Subscribe to Evan and Lauren's Cool Blog (and verify the subscription to be valid) and leave a separate comment that you did.
- Subscribe via Google Friend Connect to Evan and Lauren's Cool Blog (on the Right hand side)
- Already a subscriber (thank you) then leave a comment stating you are
- Share this link on your Facebook page and leave a comment here stating you did.
- Follow me on Twitter @galiberti If you already follow me, just leave a comment here that you are a Follower.
- Follow Kirklands @kirklands on Twitter and comment here you are a follower.
- Tweet this Giveaway (you can do this daily): Win a Kirkland's Seafoam Mosaic Ruffle Pillow from @galiberti. @kirklands #Giveaway #Win
Contest closes Friday, February 3rd, 2012.
Winner will be chosen by and will be sent the Kirkland's Seafoam Mosaic Ruffle Pillow.
Disclosure: I received this Ruffle Pillow to review it. All opinions are my own and no other compensation was received.

Friday, January 27, 2012

1/27/12: Mary Kay 15% Discount and Fun Event

I told you in an earlier post with a giveaway about my wonderful friend Pam who is a Mary Kay Independent Beauty Consultant.  Just a reminder that giveaway for the Satin Hands Pampering Set ends today at midnight so there is still time to enter!   
Thanks to the wonderful response on that post Pam is being nice enough to offer my readers 15% off your order and free shipping! 
Just place your order and add Evan and Lauren's Cool Blog in the notes and she will discount your order before it goes through final approval.  Note that the discount will not show up initially but Pam will adjust it when the order comes through.  Email Pam at: if you have any problems.
What a great gift to pamper yourself on Valentine's Day or to give someone.
Come on and support a local Mom and check out
 Also Pam is holding an event for you to get to sample some of the products, enjoy a little pampering and even win door prizes:
Saturday, February 11th between 12-4
Burlington Marriot, Burlington, MA
Vineyard Room
RSVP to Pam at:
781-405-2126 or
Feel free to bring children if needed as there will be cupcakes for them too.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

1/25/12: Business Cards from Tiny Prints - for Blog Conferences, Personal Business, and more

When I went to my first Blogger conference - Bloggy Boot Camp I had no idea what to expect.  Luckily a friend of mine told me that I must have Business Cards.  I had no idea.  So glad she told me or I would have looked really silly without them.  So the night before I ran to Staples and got some business card paper and made my own.  I also realized that every time I go to a Blogger hosted event handing out your business card is a must.  Here is the stack I received from that first conference.  These are all new connections I was able to make through that one day conference! 
I wish at the time I had known in advance and could have gone to Tiny Prints to get them since they have so many great designs.  I have posted about Tiny Prints many times and I know their quality is great in addition to the fact that they have designers check what you enter in for personalization.  Luckily the designer caught that I had a typo in my address labels.  

Tiny Prints has so many wonderful Business Card Designs.  I especially thought some of their folded designs were neat as I like to include pictures which have been a big hit with PR people and other bloggers when I hand them out.  This one is called Professional Image.

Another reason I use my business cards is to give to Moms when I meet them at a playgroup or at the playground.  What a great way to provide your contact info.  This one called called Contact Me would be perfect.

It doesn't matter if you are a small business, a blogger or a brand rep.  This card is the only memory someone you meet will have to remember you by.  So make them stand out from the rest.
Disclosure:  I received 50 Business Cards in exchange for this review.  No other compensation was received and all opinions are my own.

1/25/12: Finding Nemo in 3D!

Finding Nemo returns to theatres on September 14th, 2012 in Disney Digital 3D!  I know my family loved this movie so we are excited to see it in 3D.
The official Trailer!
The kids love the Finding Nemo ride in Epcot and also the show in Animal Kingdom so I know they will be excited to see the movie in 3D.  If you have never seen it, here is some more information about the movie:
Academy Award®-winning Best Animated Feature “Finding Nemo” returns to the big screen for the first time ever in thrilling Disney Digital 3D™. In this stunning underwater adventure, with memorable characters, humor and heartfelt emotion, “Finding Nemo” follows the comedic and momentous journey of an overly protective clownfish named Marlin (voice by Albert Brooks) and his son Nemo (voice by Alexander Gould)––who become separated in the Great Barrier Reef when Nemo is unexpectedly taken far from his ocean home and dumped into a fish tank in a dentist’s office.
Buoyed by the companionship of Dory (voice by Ellen DeGeneres), a friendly-but-forgetful Pacific regal blue tang, Marlin embarks on a dangerous trek and finds himself the unlikely hero of an epic effort to rescue his son––who hatches a few daring plans of his own to return safely home.
Did you know:
-  “Finding Nemo” won the 2003 Academy Award® for Best Animated Feature.
-  The film won a Golden Globe® Award for Best Motion Picture–Musical or Comedy.
-  At the time of its release, “Finding Nemo” was the highest grossing G-rated movie of all time.
-  Ellen DeGeneres won an MTV Movie Award for Best Comedic Performance.
-  In 2008, The American Film Institute named “Finding Nemo” among the top 10 greatest animated films ever made.

Just keeping swimming and swim over to "Like" FINDING NEMO 3D on Facebook:

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

1/24/12: Valentine's for your Sweetheart from Tiny Prints

Despite our weather in Boston recently it is truly late January.  You know what that means?  Valentine's Day is right around the corner.  I am sure your kids need plenty of Valentine's Cards for classroom parties and to share with their friends.
Tiny Prints comes through again with some beautiful and adorable Valentine's Day Cards. 
I have posted about Tiny Prints in the past and ordered the most beautiful Christmas Cards from them that got so many compliments from family and friends.
Tiny Prints has so many adorable kids designs for Valentine's Day for classroom parties.  I love anything Space and this one called To The Moon is out of this world!  I love that you can include your child's picture and personalize it.  How cute is this?
Or how adorable is this Special Astronaut one?
I love using pictures of the kids in their birthday invitations or anything I send to friends and family and these are a wonderful option for me.  I know my little Princess would love this one this called Fairytale Charm:
Or for your Little Ballerina:
They also have Valentine's Day Cards for wives, husbands, boyfriends, girlfriends here.
Since it is Valentine's Day give Tiny Prints some love:
Follow Tiny Prints on Twitter @TinyPrints
Like Tiny Prints on Facebook
Follow Tiny Prints boards on Pinterest
Disclosure:  I received 50 Valentine's Cards in exchange for this review.  No other compensation was received and all opinions are my own.

1/24/2012: Playful Paws Playgroup at the Franklin Park and Stone Zoos!

Want something different to do with your little one?  Sign up for the Playful Paws Playgroups!
Get out of the house and bring your little one (18 months – 3 years) to the Zoo for some open play and animal exploration at the Playful Paws playgroups! Each class may include storytimes, animal encounters, biofacts, simple crafts and more! Classes are offered at Franklin Park Zoo and Stone Zoo.
February 2012 – One of these Animals is not like the Other: meets every Wednesday in February, except February 22, from 10:15 – 11:00 a.m. in the Meeting Barn at Franklin Park Zoo. *The cost is $8 for members/$10 for non-members (per adult/child pair), and pre-registration is required.

March 2012 – Silly Senses – five Fridays – five senses!: Meets every Friday in March from 10:15 – 11:00 a.m. in the Animal Discovery Center at Stone Zoo *Cost for this program is $40 Members/$50 Non-Members (per adult/child pair)

April 2012 – Creature Coverings: meets every Wednesday in April, except April 18, from 10:15 – 11:00 a.m. in the Meeting Barn at Franklin Park Zoo. *Cost for this program is $24 Members/$30 Non-Members (per adult/child pair)
Space is limited so register soon! For more information call 617-989-3742 or visit to learn more about Franklin Park Zoo and Stone Zoo.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

1/22/12: Get Involved With Your School's PTO!

Did you know that your school's Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) is responsible for funding and running so many fun events that your kids get to participate in? 
As a public service announcement for every school's PTO out there I am asking you to think about volunteering your time.  Even if it is only a half hour or hour during an event.  Don't be overwhelmed, you can even do some work in your house that would help out so much at your school.
At our school our Ditson Student Association funds many programs and also supplements classroom materials and events.  We provide each child a Ditson folder and pencil at the beginning of school.  In addition our students and families enjoy special programs, activities and events including Field day, Holiday Fair, Family Nights (including a Halloween Party, Star Party, Family Picnic, etc), Fifth Grade Party and Yearbook, Awards Day, Reading Program, funding towards field trips, special programs for the classrooms and much more.
I know, I know, you don't have the time.  Well that is fair but understand that you don't need to attend every PTO meeting, you don't have to volunteer for hours upon hours.  Give the time that you can.  It some cases you can even do some work to help out from home. 
I did that last year when I designed the buttons for the Holiday Fair.  I just did some work on my computer and provided the print outs.
I was lucky enough this year to help out with the Yankee Doodle Parade Float for our town's parade which was dangerously close to not having participation from our school due to lack of volunteers.  Luckily myself and two others stepped up to work on a plan and a float for the parade.  Look at this wonderful group of ladies that worked together to get this done and walked with students. 
The 5th generation grandchildren of Thomas Ditson (our school's namesake) were the Grand Marshall's of the Parade.  It would have been a horrible shame if we didn't participate.  Look at the smiles on these kids faces.
I have also been fortunate enough to run the Art Show.  Another event that is run for all the schools and would not be possible without parent volunteers.
Notice that I always say that I was lucky enough to participate as I get as much enjoyment out of volunteering at school as the kids do.  I get to know Evan's classmates better, I get to know their parents and I get a big smile from Evan when I am there.  Last year Evan was in Kindergarten so it was our first year at the school.  I was a little intimidated attending PTO meetings not knowing anyone as I can tend to be shy when I don't know anyone.  But as I became involved I got to meet lots of parents which makes it so much fun for me when at school functions or sporting events in town and to know others. 
Now my son is in 1st grade and I am the Co-Vice President of my PTO and have learned so much about the school and been able to work with administration in the school.  I am responsible for the school fundraisers which are a lot of work for the volunteers involved.  I know you probably dread when the booklets come home for fundraisers but just know that the money raised pays for many events your children enjoy and these fundraisers are much needed.  
Update (September 2013) - I am now the Co-President of the PTO and my stress level about parent involvement is even higher.  Please get involved.  The more the merrier!
We also do a Walk-a-Thon as a fundraiser in the spring and I was lucky enough to help with that last year.  It was wonderful seeing the students and teachers getting outside and getting some air and exercise while raising money for the school.  What a wonderful event!
 What have you got to lose?  Even if you can't attend a meeting, look on your school's website and reach out to your PTO's board or any PTO members you know and see if they need a helping hand.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

1/21/12: Clifford the Big Red Dog Live Stage Show at the Wilbur Theatre

As I mentioned in my earlier post, Clifford is in town and we were lucky enough to see him!  We went to see Clifford the Big Red Dog Live A Big Family Musical at the Wilbur Theatre today.  What a lovely theatre and what an adorable show for the kids.    
I love taking my kids to the theatre.  It is so fun to have new experiences and they have been to so many shows now which will hopefully foster a love for the theatre later in life for them.  It is so nice to see Theatres in Boston having family friendly shows.
Here is Emily Elizabeth with Clifford when he was a puppy.
 He got big really quick.
 The kids excited at the show.
They had some really cute interactive parts with the kids where they would help Emily Elizabeth spot Clifford.  It was funny to hear all the kids yelling at the stage when you could see just his tail sticking out from side stage.  They also had the floor area set up with tables which was very fun for a little one to go to the theatre and have a table with snacks.
Clifford is adorable!
Great job to all the cast and crew, our family thoroughly enjoyed the show.
Disclosure: I received a family four pack of tickets for the show to promote it. All opinions are my own and no other compensation was received.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

1/18/12: Mom Bloggers for Social Good is Launched, Come Join Us!

I am lucky enough to be a founding member of Mom Bloggers for Social Good  and I wanted to tell you a bit more about them.  I feel like sometimes we take so many things for granted and this is a way to use Social Media and our voice for good.

Mom Bloggers for Social Good is a global coalition of mom bloggers who currently span eleven countries – United States, Canada, UK, India, Spain, Nigeria, Singapore, Netherlands, Malaysia, Jamaica, and the Philippines – who care about spreading the good news about the amazing work non-profit organizations and NGOs are doing around the world. When their partners need to reach the masses about new initiatives, advocacy campaigns, or fundraising efforts we work voluntarily and collectively to spread the word through social media and blogging.
One of their sponsors is More Than Me who gets little girls off the street and into school in one of the world’s most dangerous slums in the world in Liberia, West Africa. They work with community leaders to identify the girls who are at the highest risk of being sexually exploited to ensure that education and opportunity, not exploitation and poverty, defines their lives. They pay tuition, provide school lunch and we work with the school and community to make it impossible for her to fail. It's working, 10% of their girls are 1st in their class!  Isn't that amazing. 
In January 2012 Mom Bloggers for Social Good launched with 400 founding members who committed their social media and blogging platforms to share the messages of our partners. Their partners cover the following areas of concentration:
  • Children
  • Education
  • Maternal Health
  • Fair Trade
  • Workers’ Rights
  • Environment and Climate
  • Communicable Disease
  • Non-Communicable Disease
  • Access to Clean Water and Sanitation
  • Food Security
  • Malaria and Tuberculosis
  • HIV / AIDS
  • Women and Girls

If you’d like to learn more about what they do, see their infographic on how Mom Bloggers for Social Good works.
If you would like to become a partner, please email them as they are always looking partners to help through blogging and social media.
If you would like to become a member, visit our Join Us page where you can sign up and become a pivotal part of Mom Bloggers for Social Good.
Follow them on Twitter at @socialgoodmoms and use the hashtag: #socialgoodmoms
Like them on Facebook here

Sunday, January 15, 2012

1/15/12: Adora - A Yummy Chocolate Calcuim Supplement

I unfortunately don't drink milk which makes it hard to get the 1000 mg calcium per day needed for my age.  Go here to find out requirements based on age.  When I went to an allergist recently they tested my blood and found that my Vitamin D was very low.  I am also a person who doesn't like to take pills.  Some of them taste bad, are very large or I just plain forget.  
Adora™ Calcium in premium chocolate will change the way you think about calcium supplements.  If you've been choking down calcium pills or chews that are chalky, sticky, or simply too big to swallow, then you are in for a real treat!  Adora Calcium is made from all-natural chocolate - not a fake chocolate chew, but real, premium chocolate produced by a chocolate company that's been in business since 1879.  The flavor is rich and creamy with just a hint of sweetness and no bitter aftertaste.  Adora will make you Crave Your Calcium™.
Adora Calcium is really good.  I don't really like chocolate a lot and I love it.  Funny enough my Dad worked for a candy company when I was growing up so it was always in the house but I don't really eat it too much.  The only issue is to stop at just one.   It is made by Thompson Brands, a chocolate company that has been developing quality chocolate novelties since 1879.  After over a century of perfecting the art of chocolate molding, the team at Thompson Brands believed chocolate offered more than great taste. When research revealed that chocolate contained health-promoting antioxidants, they knew it was the perfect vehicle for deliciously delivering health benefits.
Adora was even on The TODAY Show recently as one of Kathie Lee and Hoda’s “Favorite Things?”
Would you believe that nearly 65% of Americans are not getting the calcium their bodies need?
So instead of getting your sweetheart a box of chocolates, what about Adora Chocolate and a Calcium Supplement.  Their bones will thank you.
You can buy them online on the Adora website or at Vitamin Shoppe, Whole Foods and other retailers nationwide for around $7.99-$9.99 for a 1 month supply.
Feel free to check out their website at
Like them on Facebook at
Follow them on Twitter at @AdoraCalcium
Disclosure:  I received a one month supply of Adora in both Milk and Dark Chocolate for review purposes.  No other compensation was received and all opinions are my own.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

1/14/12: FTC Bowled Over Robotics Competition

My company PTC sponsors the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Tech Challenge so I was able to participate for the last two years as a judge. This is a competition for High School students to build a robot and compete with it in the ring and in many other categories which I as a judge interviewed and judged them on. These included Innovation of Design, Design aspects, Motivation, Connection with the community, Think - for their Engineering Notebook, and Inspire as a combination award of who placed highly and did well in matches. Here is one team that had a lot of support from PTC.  I found out later they made it through the qualifier. 
Vision for FIRST: "To transform our culture by creating a world where science and technology are celebrated and where young people dream of becoming science and technology leaders." - Dean Kamen, Founder
This year's competition was called Bowled Over
It was so nice to see so many young people interested in science and engineering. It is great we have something like this for young people. Many of the groups we spoke to were very inspiring and were very impressive individuals. I know it must have been intimidating to have a panel of 3 judges asking them questions, but the enthusiasm for their robots showed through. And for me it was nice seeing some young ladies involved also. Being one of 3 women in my Aerospace Engineering classes I knew what it was like being in the minority in an Engineering field.
Another PTC Logo.
Another cool robot by the team from Lexington - 2 Bits and a Byte who received the overall Inspire award, and I found out after won the whole competition.
Robots during competition getting caught up.
Also one of the High Schools in our town competed called Shawsheen Technical HS.  I talked to their coach and they were having a tough day competing.  Here they are tipped over.  So heartbreaking when you know how much work they put in to compete.
 I hope all of the teams had fun today, I know I did.