I’m Loppin’ On Sunshine, And don’t it feel good (HEY!). Day 7 of The Mint Chip Mama’s Favorite Things: Fiskars Lopper

I guess it was just a matter of time. One day I knew I would find him. I didn’t even know he existed for the first 36 years of my life. Then one day, there he was. Sitting on Amazon‘s Patio, Lawn & Garden page as the #1 most popular in the category gardening, hand tools – my tall, dark and handsome Fiskars Lopper.

Why Do I Need A Fiskars Lopper?

What’s a Fiskars Lopper you ask? YOU being the person – like me – whose backyard was formerly skyscrapers. YOU being the person who has their gardener do the “full shebang” on their property. YOU who don’t generally get excited about gardening tools… Well today’s the day. Know that satisfaction when you pop a really big pimple? If you answered “ew” then I was just kidding… I don’t either. Gross. But if you answered “yes!” Then bring.it.on. Get ready for some satisfaction.

The Mint Chip Mama - Fiskars Lopper

My new boyfriend.

Gardening Is In My Genes

Green thumbs run in my family (we have a group plan with a dermatologist). I spent countless hours at my grandparents’ house meandering around their huge backyard garden. When I was older I helped my mom tend to the vegetable plants we grew in buckets on our deck. However, it wasn’t until my senior year at The University of Michigan when I took the most fantastic class – Practical Botany.  Here my husband would say with an eye roll – “go ahead, brag that it was a FIVE credit class and you got an A”. So, once my family made the big move out to the suburbs, I was psyched to have a huge backyard that I could turn into my own oasis.

The Mint Chip Mama cutting branches next to a bbq

A Saturday night at our house looks different from a decade ago.

Now I Have A Backyard. What Do I Do With It?

What’s that you say Mr. Backyard? You are rootier than The Huxtables? (I crack myself up). So what’s a girl to do? I flagged down my neighbor’s tree cutter who recommended I get a lopper. “Sure, a lopper” (I played it so cool). I looked it up and apparently a lopper was all I needed to get rid of roots, branches, anything standing in my way to backyard bliss. I was sold.

The Mint Chip Mama - Stump

A big stumpy example (one of my most proud wins). Stump: 0, The Mint Chip Mama: 1

Enter Fiskars Lopper

I was so eager to start lopping. It was a breeze to use! Even prompting me to tweet the company saying my lopping reminded me of my daughter’s book Not All Princesses Dress in Pink. I was lopping through roots left and right with the ease of a nail clipper. So much so that I was able to clear a big strip in my backyard (bordering a water basin) to plant MY own vegetable garden. It became addicting. Every free moment I had (read: between bedtime and sunset when both of my children were asleep – so like 20 minutes once a month) you could find me out in the yard lopping to my heart’s content. It is very satisfying to not only reclaim my dirt from those roots, but also to cut down branches that were shading my plants and hanging over my fence.

I kind of want to wear my wedding tiara while I do it. As an added bonus it is a fantastic way to get out aggression and for the onetime $45.99 it is much less than the co-pay for a therapist.

The Mint Chip Mama Little Girl at Home Depot Building something

While my 4 year old daughter is not of lopper age yet, she’s pretty handy already. #GirlPower

Fiskar’s also offers a whole range of gardening & yard care products; crafting, sewing, and quilting tools, plus a full range of school supplies for kids.

The Mint Chip Mama - Fiskars Products

Thank you Fiskars for introducing me to an easy to use and very satisfying product. You have become one of my favorite things!


Fiskars has offered to give away a Fiskars 32 Inch PowerGear Bypass Lopper to one lucky reader in the US or Canada!

To win – please post in the comment section below:

What household task do you secretly find super satisfying?

Winner will be chosen Friday, August 15th, 2014.

The Mint Chip Mama - Fiskars Lopper


Fiskars Brand Heritage

Established in 1649 as an ironworks in a small Finnish village, Fiskars has grown to be a leading global supplier of consumer products for the home, garden and outdoors. Available in more than 60 countries, Fiskars products solve everyday problems, making daily home, garden and outdoor projects easier and more enjoyable through superior performance and design.

In 1967, Fiskars revolutionized the way the world thought about scissors. Not only were our orange-handled scissors lighter, more comfortable and easier to handle than heavy forged scissors, they also delivered an amazing leap in cutting performance. This caused many home seamstresses to declare them off limits to the rest of the family — they were only for cutting fabric, only for projects that were truly special. Since then, our orange-handled scissors have become the standard of quality worldwide, selling over 1 billion.

Creativity continues to flourish in Fiskars Village today, where our company first began in 1649. With over 100 permanent resident artists and designers, the village is a hub of creativity, innovation and design. Blacksmiths, industrial designers, ceramicists, glass designers and more all call Fiskars Village their home. And with 2,000 square meters of exhibition space, it has now become the second-largest tourist attraction in Finland.

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Label it, Just a Little Bit. Day 6 of of The Mint Chip Mama’s Favorite Things: Mabel’s Labels Name Labels

No one likes labels – we all say. Unless, that is – it’s for your stuff so you don’t lose it! Then we all looove name labels. Especially for Back to School.

Name Label Time Was The Best Time

Name labels make me thing of getting ready for camp. I can still vividly see the white name labels with my name in a black block font. No, I mean I can LITERALLY still see them – hmmm I guess it’s time for some new clothes… But my terry cloth shorts are my favorite item of clothes ever!

These name labels meant several things. 1) I finally would have something printed with my name on it! (Since “Stacey” is spelled so many different ways finding items with the “E” was always a challenge). 2) Ironing board time which was oddly exciting . 3) It meant camp was coming! And who doesn’t love camp? I LOVED camp. To me, name labels and camp went hand in hand.

The Mint Chip Mama Long Island Mom Blog: Mabels Labels Terry cloth shorts

It’s Exciting to Label Something

There’s just something exciting about labeling things (my husband is laughing at me right now). I guess it’s like a dog marking its territory. Or why we all love to organize and then label what we organized. Try saying “The Container Store” without smiling. When my first child came along I had vision of her beautiful name being printed on labels so I could put them on all of her stuff. Spoiler alert: it was as exciting as I expected.

Enter Mabels Labels

I found out about Mabel’s Labels before my daughter really needing anything labeled, however – she needed name labels. Cute, girly, purple, princess name labels. So I ordered some. Then I let them sit in a drawer until I could figure out what to label. The name labels were such good quality I didn’t want to waste one on something temporary. I finally decided – her snack cup, that we began carrying with us everywhere  was the perfect candidate. Let me tell you – it was a defining moment in my “mom-ness” placing that first label on. Ah—good memories. I had such pride when people would compliment it (yes, people complimented the label because it was so cute!). The best part was – it was self adhesive! No unicorn ironing board needed (the advances in name labels since 1991 are quite astounding). I should mention we ran that sucker through the dishwasher countless times and the label still looked fresh and new.

The Mint Chip Mama Long Island Mom Blog: Mabels Labels school supplies name labels

Name Labels Evolved As Did The Kids!

Fast forward a few years and my daughter has been to camp and school. Her Mabel’s Labels pattern has evolved with her. Now that she’s big time and in is Pre-K time, we upgraded to a purple tiara label from the Ultimate Back to School Combo. This limited time (available only until September 30th) bestselling kids’ school label combo pack includes all the durable, waterproof name labels needed to keep belongings out of the lost and found. There are 4 limited edition solid palettes or 40+ multi-colored designs, plus special back-to-school motifs! I’m most excited to label her shoes with the round Shoe Labels.

The Mint Chip Mama Long Island Mom Blog

If your child sways more towards the sophisticated side you will love Mabel’s Labels brand new Stylish Scholars Combo for back to school. It features a range of modern, refined, stylish designs perfect for scholars of all ages. Use these sophisticated name labels on school supplies, water bottles, electronics – like tablets, chargers or cell phone cases – and much more! I chose these for my son – in the blue “Camo” pattern. At nine months he leans much more towards Frank Lloyd Wright.

The Mint Chip Mama

Any Name Label Will Be The Right Name Label!

You can’t go wrong with any Mabel’s Labels choice for all of your back to school, daycare, or even second session of camp needs. The best part is – they won’t go stale! They are dishwasher, microwave safe, washer and dryer safe. They are waterproof and UV resistant.

Thank you Mabel’s Labels for introducing me to a useful, reliable & fun product. You have become one of my favorite things!

*Name Label GIVEAWAY*

Mabel’s Labels has offered to give away a Stylish Scholars Combo  to one lucky reader!

To win – please post in the comment section below:

What’s the funniest thing you have labeled? (Thin Mints that you don’t want your husband to eat count)

Winner will be chosen Thursday, August 14th, 2014.

The Mint Chip Mama tie dye


Mabel’s Labels Brand Heritage

Mabel’s Labels started in 2003 by four frustrated moms (Julie Cole, Julie Ellis, Cynthia Esp, Tricia Mumby) because their children’s belongings left home and but did not come back. They decided to create the very best personalized, waterproof, name labels and tags possible. They’ve built on this commitment to excellence over the years and now feature child safety products, household labels and seasonal items as well.

It is not surprising these fantastic labels have won: the 2007 SavvyMom “Mom Entrepreneur of the Year”, “Best Product” from Baby Gizmo, iParenting and PTPA Media, and a 2009 Royal Bank of Canada Women Entrepreneur Award; and have been featured on The View, Today, The Early Show, Rachael Ray, LIVE! with Regis and Kelly, Parents, In Style, The Washington Post, Huffington Post, People.com, Forbes.com and countless blogs and websites. Mabel’s Labels is listed on Inc.com’s list of ‘20 Awesome Facebook Fan Pages’ and Hubspot’s ‘The 15 Best Facebook Pages You’ve Ever Seen’. Plus they have a big celebrity mom following!

The founding moms are still involved and are sought-after experts on social media.

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Lice, Lice, Baby. Day 5 of The Mint Chip Mama’s Favorite Things: Vamousse

Lice is something you hope you never have to deal with, but you want to be prepared in case it comes. This is why I have a Vamousse and have an arsenal of it – at the ready – in my closet.

What Girl Scouts Taught Me

When I was a Girl Scout Brownie, one of my biggest achievements was selling the most cookies and earning a “Saturn” necklace from the BACK of the catalog. This was the highest reward one could earn and twenty five years later I am still very proud. Huzzah! (Side note: I recently found it at my mom’s house behind my (still wrapped) Wedgwood India wedding china and immediately felt a rush of pride. I put it on and have told everyone who would listen (and those forced to – read: cashiers, dry cleaner, Girl Scouts on the street, etc) this story.) My point – yes I have one – besides now forcing YOU to hear my story – (ha, ha, made you listen) – is Girl Scouts taught me the motto “Be Prepared”.

The Mint Chip Mama: Saturn Girl Scout Necklace

Be Prepared

This is something I have lived by for as long as I can remember. It annoys the you-know-what out of my husband as I am generally prepared for a nuclear holocaust – you know, just in case. But I like to have everything I need at a fingers distance just in case. Hey – it’s a good motto!

Enter Vamousse

So with that said – I recently learned about Vamousse Head Lice Treatment products. Products I hope I never have to use. Now that my daughter is in school (and camp right now), I fear every day looking in her bag I will find one of those “dreaded lice letters”. Oh, someone in the school has lice – fantastic! Allow me to send my child in tomorrow in this lovely bubble I bought on Amazon Prime. Blech. Sorry if I made you itch. So what can you do about it?

Lice Defense Is The Best Offense

You can start using Vamousse Head Lice Defense Shampoo ASAP. Since you were prepared too, you already have it in your closet (go you). Because it uses non-toxic, natural ingredients (that means NO PESTICIDES!) to prevent infestation by killing lice before they lay eggs, it won’t hurt to use it just-in-case. You will make yourself feel better because you have an “action plan” and stop the unwanted pests in their tracks. If they are there. Which you don’t want to really think about. Blech. Isn’t that exciting! You don’t have to poison your kid to get rid of or prevent these pesky intruders.

20140806 lice-shampoo_bottle

When I heard that I had to get it. It’s there right now on my shelf quoting Benjamin Franklin — ‘An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure’. Plus, Vamousse Head Lice Defense Shampoo is designed to be used in place of your regular daily shampoo.

Ew, But What If I Get The Lice Letter

So you get the letter, you go to your closet, you pull it out & then you can use it that night. For me, that is the utmost being prepared. Go buy it now! Still itching? You can use it too. In fact, the whole family can use it since it is preventative and non-toxic.

But What If My Kid Is Lice Patient Zero?

Now, let’s go to that dreaded place – the letter came home because of your own little pigpen. If you have a bottle of Vamousse Head Lice Treatment Mousse in your closet you can simply go get it and start using it on your poor child currently locked in the closet. The lice treatment is proven to kill 100% of lice and eggs, in just 15 minutes, It kills lice AND eggs with 1 application (no other product kills lice AND eggs), it is a mousse product – with a canister nozzle – providing quick and accurate application that is less likely to drip in your child’s eyes, it is proven to kill 100% of resistant head lice (meaning you win!), it is non-toxic, pesticide free, and safe for children 2 years and older.

The Mint Chip Mama: Vamousse Lice Treatment

It’s My Favorite Thing I’ve Never Used

I know this series is about my “favorite things” so I hope you’ll be cool with me saying this is a favorite thing without ever having used it. If you aren’t, tough – I prefer to keep it that way! But in all honestly, I have thought of buying a preventative shampoo before but just can’t bring myself to buying something with pesticides for my little girl. That’s why I was really excited about this product. This is an absolute necessity for your Back to School shopping cart.

Thank you Vamousse for introducing me to a great, safe product. You have become one of my favorite things!

*Vamousse GIVEAWAY*

Vamousse has offered to give away a Set of Vamousse Lice Treatment and Prevention Shampoo to one lucky reader!

To win – please post in the comment section below:

What’s your “freak-out” story when you got the dreaded letter or found out there was a lice outbreak?

Winner will be chosen Wednesday, August 13th, 2014.

20140806 Vamousse_Products_image (2)


Vamousse Brand Heritage

Here is a little more on Vamousse because as you know – I LOVE learning about the heritage of brands:

Vamousse was created by Brooke Bissinger, the head of Research & Design at TyraTech, located in the Research Triangle Park in North Carolina. Brooke is a mom of two and holds a PhD in Entomology from North Carolina State University. She can be seen here on a recent WRAL TV interview with a local mom blogger in North Carolina.

The decade old TyraTech’s motto is “putting nature to work”. They have developed a unique technology platform able to transform safe active ingredients into potent insect control products. Their platform is based on proprietary technology discovered at Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center.

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Nursing 9 to 5, What a Way to Make a Human. Day 4 of The Mint Chip Mama’s Favorite Things: Glamourmom Nursing Tank Top

Glamourmom Nursing Tank Top

August is “Breastfeeding Awareness Month” and August 1st-7th, 2014 is slated as “World Breastfeeding Week”. Given my love for nursing I would be remiss not to include all of my favorite breastfeeding paraphernalia in my “Favorite Things” series. I have been lucky enough to have nursed for an extended time and to currently be nursing. So this is a topic near and dear to my heart (quite literally!).  Forget saying these are breastfeeding “accessories”. In my world – these are breastfeed necessities. The first of which is my beloved, beloved Glamourmom Nursing Bra Full Bust Long Top.

The Mint Chip Mama: Glamourmom Babies nursing tank top

Glamourmom Was One Of My Best Pregnancy Finds

I learned about Glamourmom through Big City Moms back in 2009 when I was pregnant with my daughter. I went to their showroom and immediately wanted everything. I loved the nursing bras, tanks, sleepwear, the colors, the soft Pima cotton, and the delicate details – everything about the clothes. Of course being pregnant with my first child – nursing was only an abstract concept at the time. It was not until I had my daughter and began nursing that I fully appreciated the items.

Love At First Boob

From the moment I put on Glamourmom’s Nursing Bra Full Bust Long Top (In the hospital because I was given the great advice to bring a cute black tank to look nice in pictures. Instead of looking like a post-partum train-wreck.) it felt like my second skin. I went home from the hospital – both times – in  Glamourmom shirts. This also provided me a look that was super cute in the 4,000 pictures taken between the hospital and my apartment door. The Pima cotton was so soft on my poor body that had just been through so much. I also loved that it was two pieces – the cross-cut top and the detachable bra. But most of all – the soft cotton, oh the soft Pima cotton!

The Mint Chip Mama: Pregnant Woman Wearing a Glamourmom The Mint Chip Mama: Glamourmom nursing tank top

Big Boobs And Shelf Bras Never Worked For Me Before

I always had trouble finding shelf-bra tank tops that could accommodate my – um – large sized milk containers, shall we say? When I saw Glamourmom’s “Full Bust” option I jumped for joy. It fit live a glove! But it really fit like a glove – absolutely perfect. A fact that has led me to wear a Glamourmom Nursing Bra Full Bust Long Top pretty much every day since 2010… (shhhh).

Glamourmom Nursing Tank Tops Are Even Perfect Post Nursing Stage

I must admit the tanks stayed in my drawer post-breastfeeding because the are the perfect combination of support and length. There is beauty in the synergy of tank top strength and length. I struck gold. Perfect under a too short tank. Perfect when you forget to wash your other bras.

After A Thousand Washings They Are Still Going Strong

With that said, my Glamourmom Nursing Bra Full Bust Long Tops have been washed over and over and over again and honestly – they look as good as the day they came out of the bag. I run them through the machine with my regular weekly load and then hang them to dry.

The Mint Chip Mama: Glamourmom Nursing Bra Long Tank The Mint Chip Mama: Glamourmom nursing tank topBreastfeeding A Baby

Glamourmom Sizing

The Glamourmom Nursing Bra Full Bust Long Top fits from size 32D – 48I, comes in six different colors and is $59. The original Glamourmom Nursing Bra Tank fits from size 28AA – 44DDD, comes in five different colors and is $39 (with additional colors available in the Glamourmom Outlet). The Glamourmom Nursing Bra Long Sleeve with Detachable Nursing Bra fits 30A – 46G, comes in two colors and is $64. This shirt is great because it’s two things in one – the shirt and the detachable bra that you can wear under something else too. Plus it comes in purple (my favorite color).

Thank you Glamourmom for introducing me to a fantastic breastfeeding necessity. You have become one of my favorite things!


Line, the founder and original Glamourmom has offered to giveaway a Glamourmom item – the winner’s choice – to one lucky reader!

To win – please post in the comment section below:

Where is the most creative place you have nursed? Or, if you are pregnant with your first – what do you look forward to the most about nursing.

(My most creative place – and I’m quite proud of this – was while walking through the New York Botanical Garden’s 2013 Holiday Train Show in my Glamourmom Nursing Bra Full Bust Long Top of course!)

Winner will be chosen Tuesday, August 12, 2014.

The Mint Chip Mama: Glamourmom nursing tank top


Brand Heritage

Here is a little more on Glamourmom because as you know – I LOVE learning about the heritage of brands:

Glamourmom is the revolutionary company who introduced the original Built-in Nursing Bra Tanks and Tops for today’s trend-setting moms. The idea for Glamourmom, a line of tops, slip dresses, bathing suits and sleepwear that feature a built-in nursing bra, arose after the birth of the founder Line Rothman’s first child some fourteen years ago. Frustrated by the lack of fashionable nursing bras, tops and nursing wear in the market, Line set out to create a collection of essential pieces for the new mom.

Glamourmom Nursing Bra Tanks and Nursing Bra Tops are available in a variety of options to accommodate all body types. The Nursing Bra Tanks and Bra Tops come in an array of trendy and tasteful colors, trims and fashionable lace accents. Glamourmom’s Designer Line also includes: Tankini Swimsuits, Long Sleeve options with Built-in or Detachable Nursing Bras, and a line of Sleepwear/Lounge wear in luxurious Pima cotton.

The Difference

The difference between Glamourmom’s products and its competitors are its technology, innovation behind the brand, and the many style options within the concept. The brand originated with the built-in nursing bra design and has evolved into a brand that supports an active lifestyle for both the new and expectant moms. Glamourmom products are more than just fashion, they offer women value through innovation, quality and style.

Glamourmom® products are available in over 650 specialty boutiques worldwide.

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Am I in a Spa in Thailand or My Shower? Day 3 of The Mint Chip Mama’s Favorite Things: Vitabath

I was in the cosmetic industry for a long time. During that time I was lucky enough to get many bags of swag. With that said – I have tried most products on the market today – whether mass (drugstore) or prestige (department store brands). So it takes a lot to impress me with a new fragrance, beauty, bath or cosmetic product.

Vitabath Body Wash Entrance

In November I attended the Momtrends holiday event and was introduced to the brand Vitabath. I immediately fell in love with their new products. I especially loved the Vitabath Cupcake Couture™ Heavenly Coconut Creme™ Body Wash. At first I thought it was just another body wash in a gift bag, but then I started using it and I immediately saw this product was different. I quickly became a fan.

The Mint Chip Mama: Vitabath body wash bottles

I Judge A Book By It’s Cover

Maybe it’s the packaging (and you know I’m a packaging junkie) – the beige bottle and yellow vines remind me of a fantastic trip to Thailand. Maybe it’s the fun, curly font used– the same one that my eye is always drawn to when I’m ordering stationary. Maybe it’s the French words – reminding me of a more simple time in my life when I was in Paris. It could even be the name – Heavenly Coconut Crème, or delicious scent, or the smooth texture. Or, quite simply, it could just be that I’m excited to take a shower!

I Miss Going to Spas

Since having my  kids I haven’t gone to a spa. However, when I use my Vitabath Heavenly Coconut Crème Body Wash and close my eyes – I can feel the robe and the terry cloth slippers. I can hear the soothing music and trickling fountain. Even the smallest amount on my shower pouf provides a luxurious full body lather experience.

The Mint Chip Mama: Vitabath Heavenly Cupcake Collection


Vitabath Is Made With Great Ingredients

In addition to how the product makes me feel it is quite simply a good product to use. What you will find in the bottle is an Antioxidant rich super fruit blend of Acai, Goji, Coffee, Noni, Pomegranate, Green Tea & Mangosteen. Plus the skin conditioning nutrients Vitamin A, B3, C, E and Pro-Vitamin B5 enrich the formula. What you won’t find are any Sulfates, Parabens, Petro-Chemicals, Triclosan, propylene glycol, DEA, TEA, mineral oils or silicone.

You Don’t Have To Share

Another thing I like is it says it’s for adult use only. I like that because I know not to use it on my kids. I also like that because it means it’s just mine. I can’t use it on my kids! More for me – Yay!

Thank you Vitabath for introducing me to a luxurious product. You have become one of my favorite things!

*Vitabath GIVEAWAY*

Vitabath is giving away a bottle of the Cupcake Couture™ Heavenly Coconut Creme™ with Coconut Oil Body Wash to one lucky reader!

To win – please post in the comment section below:

What is your most powerful memory relating to a smell or a scent?

Winner will be chosen Monday, August 11th, 2014.

20140804 Cupcake_Couture_Heavenly_Coconut_Creme_Body_Wash_full__67719.1370617725.386.513


Vitabath Brand Heritage

Here is a little more on Vitabath because as you know – I LOVE learning about the heritage of brands:

For more than 55 years, consumers trusted the Vitabath brand for unparalleled skin cleansing and conditioning. Vitabath’s quality ingredients and rich fragrances indulge the senses and nourish the skin, resulting in a relaxing, yet invigorating, at-home spa experience. In 2011, Vitabath revitalized its brand with the introduction of a new moisturizing, sulfate and paraben free body wash line in a wide variety of fresh, playful fragrances.

All of the products in Vitabath’s newest collection of sulfate and paraben free body washes and fragrance mists boast a moisturizing formula that leaves skin feeling clean, refreshed and vibrant. 

Vitabath Classic: The Vitabath® brand represents the utmost in quality and care for the skin, spanning an array of product forms that support the classic Moisturizing Bath and Shower Gelee. 

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Your Granola-ing… What’s your price for flight. Day 2 of The Mint Chip Mama’s Favorite Things: Jessica’s Natural Foods

My college friend started a company, Jessica’s Natural Foods! Thank goodness for her!

Why Is My Stomach Mad? 

A few years back I started getting sick when I ate rich food. As a foodie I LOVED going to fancy restaurants and trying decadent things. My stomach – which was never a warrior to begin with – started to rebel. The first time I wrote it off as eating a bad batch of “X”. The next time I blamed it on being pregnant. Finally, after a post-pregnancy anniversary dinner showed its face before we walked to the end of the block, I started to pay attention (sorry TMI).

 Gluten & I Were Not Friends

I went to a fantastic gastroenterologist. After an endoscopy she advised I was gluten sensitive. She told me to go 30 days gluten free and see how I felt.

The Short Lived Time I Was Gluten Free

I started my gluten free quest and was lucky enough to have a friend who reached out to help. She had recently started a granola company and offered to send me some. I thought that was so nice! Sure, send me some – I’ll try your granola. Boy, was I surprised! Not only was Jessica’s Natural Foods DELICIOUS but I loved the packaging! I’m all about packaging and as soon as I opened the shipping box and her bright yellow and green granola bags popped out I started to smile. Every morning I went straight for the granola, and the color palate made me happy. I’m simple – nice packaging makes me smile. I judge books by their covers too (don’t tell).

The Mint Chip Mama - Jessica’s Natural Foods

Jessica’s Natural Foods Granola Is Amazing Any Way, At Any Hour

I must admit – despite her recommendations (with yogurt, milk, mixed with other cereals, even a mock graham crust) my favorite way to enjoy her granola was with a spoon directly from the bag. In fact, I had trouble putting it down! My favorite flavor was Jessica’s Natural Foods Almond Cherry – mainly because the Michigan cherries used took me back to my good old days at The University of Michigan. But I must say the Jessica’s Natural Foods Chocolate Chip was a close second. Because you know – it has chocolate in the title. I’m dying to try her newest flavor – Motor City Crunch – which I am excited to announce to the world on The Mint Chip Mama that it is changing its name to “Chocolate Hazelnut“.

The Mint Chip Mama - Jessica’s Natural Foods

Jessica’s Natural Foods Is Made With The Good Stuff

Jessica’s Natural Foods is non-GMO verified, gluten-free certified (each small, handmade batch is tested down to 5 ppm, made in a dedicated gluten-free facility in Michigan, and certified through the GFCO). Her all-natural, wholesome ingredients include rolled oats, honey, brown sugar, expeller pressed sunflower oil, ground flax seed, coconut, maple syrup, pure vanilla extract, cinnamon, and sea salt. All six flavors are also kosher parve. Jessica’s commitment to health translates into refusing to put any artificial flavors, artificial colors, preservatives, highly refined sweeteners, trans fats or cholesterol in her granola.

The Mint Chip Mama - Jessica’s Natural Foods

It’s Also Delicious

But again, regardless of how good it is for you, it’s simply delicious! It doesn’t surprise me for a minute that Whole Foods constantly restocks the 25 stores that carry Jessica’s Natural Foods or that in 2011, her Chocolate Chip granola won a blind taste test in the Detroit News beating other national and non-gluten-free granolas. Simply stated – if you like to eat granola, or want to be a person who likes to eat granola, this is a brand you need to know.

The Mint Chip Mama - Jessica’s Natural FoodsThe Mint Chip Mama - Jessica’s Natural Foods

Thank you Jessica’s Natural Foods for introducing me to a delicious and healthy product. You have become one of my favorite things!


Jessica’s Natural Foods has offered to giveaway 3 of her delicious bags of granola to one lucky reader!

To win – please post in the comment section below:

What do you consider your most “granola-y” trait – wearing Birkenstocks, using re-usable bags, only bathing in rain water…

Winner will be chosen Sunday, August 10th, 2014.

The Mint Chip Mama - Jessica’s Natural Foods


Jessica’s Natural Foods Brand Heritage

Here is a little more on Jessica’s Natural Foods because as you know – I LOVE learning about the heritage of brands:

In 2008, Jessica’s husband learned he suffered from gluten intolerance.  This inspired Jessica, an engineer and baking enthusiast, to experiment with gluten-free oats so her husband could continue to enjoy his favorite snack, granola.  After hundreds of recipe trials, she developed a slow-bake process and ingredient ratio which created a richly flavored, crunchy granola with natural ingredients. The granola was a hit amongst family and friends, giving her the impetus to develop commercial channels.  For more information, recipes, or to purchase online visit www.jessicasnaturalfoods.com.

Jessica’s Natural Foods flavors include: Almond Cherry – with chewy Michigan cherries, Chocolate Chip – with semi-sweet chocolate chips, Vanilla Maple – with real Maple Syrup and pure vanilla extract, Cherry & Berry – with chewy cherries, cranberries, and blueberries, Pecan Almond – with crunchy pecans and almonds, and Motor City Crunch – (soon to be called: “Chocolate Hazelnut”) with chocolate and hazelnut. I love that Jessica created this flavor as a tribute to Detroit, aka Motor City, which is near the company’s Birmingham headquarters. Each bag is $6.99 – $7.49.

Visit me on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram. Love me forever. #MintChipMama31DaystilBTS

Happy childhood memories come in a jar…with a spout! Day 1 of The Mint Chip Mama’s Favorite Things: This Aladdin Classic Mason Collection

The Aladdin Classic Mason Collection brought me right back to my childhood. There are few things that make me think of summer more than a big glass jar with a spout. I had one growing up. One could find it outside and filled with ice water all summer long. Once it got cold outside the jar spent its winters on a shelf in my mom’s basement reminding us of the good times of summer. To this day when I see it on that shelf it takes me back to my childhood – playing in my kiddie pool and then eating a Pop Tart.

The Mint Chip Mama An old glass jar drink dispencer

Our old jar still in my Mom’s lovely basement.

Surprise Aladdin Classic Mason Collection Delivery!

You can imagine how excited I was when I got a special delivery from Aladdin in the dead of winter!

The Mint Chip Mama - Aladdin Classic Mason Collection

Check out the snow. A nice contrast to the happy people pictured outside.

This box of fun was filled not only with an Aladdin 1 Gallon Glass Mason Beverage Dispenser but also plastic Mason cups, insulated tumblers, and a pitcher! Perfect for the new homeowner super eager to finally have a backyard of her own where I could entertain. It also made looking at the two feet of snow outside my door much easier.

Time to Use The Aladdin Classic Mason Collection Outside

The snow melted, the sun started shining, the temperature rose and summer arrived! This year I was able to bring back those nice childhood memories in my own backyard and next to my children’s kiddie pool.

Aladdin Pictures

My Aladdin dispenser mocking it’s predecessor. *Note to my mom – I’ll bring it back later.

Everyone Loves It. Not Just Me!

My Aladdin Beverage Dispenser has been the most invited guest to all our parties this summer. It still gives me a thrill every time I use it. It’s usually filled with freshly brewed iced tea. But I must say, I have a Sangria recipe with its name on it. The one gallon size is perfect to fill with enough for a large party but it still fits perfectly in my refrigerator.

20140802 Jar with Iced tea

Ruby Sipper iced tea served to my lovely guests last weekend. Thank you hand model DL.

The matching Mason pitcher is perfect for day to day dining al fresco – and my daughter loves the matching cups and fun red and white striped straws.

Thank you, Aladdin for sending me some sunshine in the winter and bringing back great memories in the summer. You have become one of my favorite things!


The generous people of Aladdin have offered to giveaway the Aladdin 1 Gallon Glass Mason Beverage Dispenser & 16oz Classic Mason To-Go Cup 4pk pictured!

To win – please post in the comment section below:

What is your favorite summer memory around a beverage?

Winner will be chosen Saturday, August 9th, 2014.

20140802 Aladdin Giveaway


Aladdin Brand Heritage

Here is a little more on Aladdin because as you know – I LOVE learning about the heritage of brands:

Aladdin has been creating lifestyle products since 1908. From the character lunch boxes that many carried as kids, to the stylish mugs they use for their morning coffee today, Aladdin is committed to creating thoughtful food and beverage solutions for modern lifestyles that make everyday moments better.

The Aladdin 1 Gallon Glass Mason Beverage Dispenser (MSRP: $9.48) is made with glass and is naturally BPA free & recyclable.

The 16oz Classic Mason To-Go Cup 4pk (MSRP: $7.88) is made with durable Eastman® Tritan™ that won’t crack, break or stain. They are dishwasher safe & BPA free.

Visit me on Facebook. Follow me on Twitter. Love me forever. #MintChipMama31DaystilBTS

Thank you to me for introducing me to the brand!

Give it Away, Give it Away, Give it Away Now.. The Mint Chip Mama 31 Days Of Blog Giveaways!

Are you excited for the first day of The Mint Chip Mama‘s “31 Days til Back to School” Blog Giveaways? YES! ME too! ()! This is such an exciting way to launch THE newest (and best) mom blog on Long Island. I can’t wait to share all of my favorite things with you!

Who likes winning Blog Giveaways!?

There are lots of great blog giveaways from the companies I love. Since I love them I want you to love them too! I call this series “til Back to School” not for Back to School because not everything is for a kid or parent. For example, if you like ice cream, this will interest you. If not, stop reading – I don’t trust you, who doesn’t like ice cream?

How do I win?

Everyday a new blog post will be published on The Mint Chip Mama featuring one of my favorite things. To win the blog giveaway that day you must comment ON THAT BLOG POST. Only comments on that day’s comment section (not on Facebook, Twitter, etc) qualifies to win. An impartial 3rd party judge will choose the winner 1 week to the day of the post at 5pm. The funnier you are the more you will impress this impartial judge. But she’s 4 so keep it PG.

What’s the big blog giveaway prize?

The Chanel makeup bag – filled with goodies – is the big prize going to the person who shares The Mint Chip Mama the most overall during the 31 days (this means share on Facebook, Twitter, from that day’s blog, even over the phone). Tell you friends, tell your enemies, tell your mom.

All items will ship directly to you. If you live near me, watch for a carrier pigeon.

Get psyched. get pumped.

Thank you to my brand partners

Thank you to all the brand partners for helping launch The Mint Chip Mama!

Who is Behind THE New Long Island Mom Blog: The Mint Chip Mama?

Stacey Gish Wallenstein is an experienced Customer Relationship Management professional. She has worked for highly successful brands in the luxury, fashion and beauty industries.

After becoming a mom and moving to the suburbs, she started a Long Island mom blog. Stacey shares her love and passion for giving children meaningful life experiences through The Mint Chip Mama. She also loves helping moms – like her – navigate the challenges and benefits of raising children in the New York metropolitan area.

Where Was She Before Her Long Island Mom Blog?

A veteran of highly established companies such as Chanel and Christian Dior, Inc., Stacey managed customer loyalty programs for thousands of clients around the country. She created social media strategies for a span of industries including healthcare services, restaurants, consumer packaged goods, local attractions and retail locations.

What Does She Know?

Stacey also has many years of experience with online marketing, database creation/maintenance, qualitative market research, vendor management and event planning.

Where Did She Go?

A graduate of the University of Michigan, Stacey served as a board member University of Michigan Alumni Club of New York City and is a founding member of the Long Island “Spirit Group”. She also holds a Masters in Psychology from The New School.

Why Launch a Long Island Mom Blog Now?

After 13 wonderful years in Manhattan, Stacey, her husband Ross, and their (then only) two children moved to Long Island. Shortly after, they had a bonus suburb baby. Stacey started her mom blog after the move as she traveled around Long Island and the tri-state area.

Stacey’s musings on motherhood, Manhattan, moving to the suburbs, and more can be found here.

They can also be found on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest. She is also a contributing writer for the The Huffington Post.

Welcome to THE new Mom Blog: The Mint Chip Mama!

Today, August 1st 2014, I am officially launching this mom blog – The Mint Chip Mama!

I’m just a mom who used to do something else at a desk and then a kid came along. Then another. (*edit*: then another in 2016!) Then I reinvented myself – like so many of us do after children – and started writing a mom blog. I lived in Manhattan at the time, where the possibilities were endless and you can meet all kinds of wonderful people any day of the week. I was lucky enough to be welcomed into the mom blogging community and started building relationships.

Previous Writing

I loved writing for Macaroni Kid Manhattan East Side. I enjoyed it so much I started looking for other opportunities as well, which brought me to The Huffington Post. I loved doing both. Covering events and new products as well as writing about important topics that I think about often. Now, with The Mint Chip Mama my goal is to do both!

31 Days til Back to School

In honor of the first day of the last month of summer, as Back to School shopping looms and the excitement for a new year begins, I’m happy to announce The Mint Chip Mama 1st Annual “31 Days til Back to School”.

I loved school. I loved Back to School shopping almost as much. These days so many friends come to me as a resource on a variety of things – from swing sets to trip preparations; from kid-friendly food you would never think of to where to score the best deal on anything you would ever want or need. So I thought the perfect kick-off would be a series of my favorite things and places.

These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things

Each day I will be writing about something I genuinely love. These are not freebies I got in exchange for a post. Full disclosure – some things were sent to me and then became a favorite thing, but most were not. Some will be places I love to visit. Some will be parent life-savers. Some will be things that you want to kick your kids out and enjoy alone (read: not parent related at all). But I promise you this – you will like these things too! I’m excited to say that because so many wonderful brands believe in me and The Mint Chip Mama I have tons of #giveaways to share!

Please Follow me!

Like me on Facebook, follow me on Instagram & Twitter, and most important enjoy reading my blog. If I can get you to laugh – extra points for me.

As my kickoff giveaway I will be giving away a Chanel make-up bag filled with some goodies. The bag will go to the person who shares my blog the most over the 31 days. Yeah, I said Chanel.

So ladies & gentlemen, let the games begin…..

*Update* I’ve gotten so many emails asking for a sneak preview of the giveaways  – I’ll only spill 10. Let’s just say if you are a fan of Aladdin, Baskin Robbins, Evenflo FeedingGlamourmomJessica’s Natural FoodsMabel’s LabelsRSDubs RibbonsVamousseVitabath, and Wall Pops you’ll be happy!

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