Tag Archives: 2012 gift guide

Mod Swad – Eco Friendly Baby Swaddle



Mod Swad is a company with a purpose: to design swaddles that combine traditional convenience and comfort with modern fashion. As with high fashion for adults, the designs can vary from “seriously?” to “wow!” and everywhere in between, but they provide swaddles you won’t find anywhere else. Mod Swad is part of KB Designs, which also owns The Woombie swaddle we reviewed recently. 

We were sent a Merino Mod Swad in gray to try with our month old son.  This swaddle is made completely of organic Merino wool and is completely breathable. As with all Mod Swads, the swaddle is very long and designed to be tied at the desired length.  This allows you to adjust the size of the swaddle as your child grows. The wool is stretchy and able to conform to baby, and the zippered design prevents arms from escaping like they do so often with velcro or simple wrap swaddles.  The gray Merino swad looks great and cleans easily. The solid color and quality of fabric makes it a great choice for taking photos or attending events (swaddles covered with hearts, snowmen or monkeys are great, but sometimes we need to dress up!).  Because it looks nice, it won’t be a swaddle we regularly use; it needs to be kept clean for special occasions. As far as quality and comfort though, this could easily be an every day swaddle.

Check out Mod Swad to see more designs and products.  They make everything fashionable, from various swaddles and sleepers to hats, mats, plus toys and burp cloths.  



Family Centsability was not monetarily compensated for this post. A product sample was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.


Stonefire Flatbreads



Stonefire is a Canadian based store that sells Authentic Flatbreads.  They carry Naan, Pita and Roti flatbreads and pride themselves on using traditional ingredients and baking processes to create the most authentic, wholesome and delicious product possible.  Stonefire operates under two “unbreakable rules:” they will use traditional methods and the finest ingredients, and they will not add preservatives. Needless to say, this is a great promise given the current popularity of fresh, natural and preservative free foods.

We tried the Naan flatbread in Original, Whole Wheat and Garlic flavors.  The Stonefire flatbreads look as though they were completely handmade, and when slightly heated become a soft bread that can be used for anything from tacos to paninis to pizza. We used each flavor and made homemade pizzas, grilled sandwiches and mango curry tacos.  The pizzas were great, the sandwiches amazing, and the curry tacos were completely balanced by the dense flatbread compared to a tortilla.  Because they are baked at a very high temperature they are airy, but still have rich substance like a homemade bread.  Many flatbreads I have tried have a texture similar to a very thin english muffin.  I was pleasantly surprised to find these are completely different.



If you are looking for flatbreads without extra ingredients, or need something mail-ordered, look no further.  Please remember to refrigerate them since there are no preservatives, and check out Stonefire’s website for delicious recipes!  Everything from artisan pizza to bananas foster – the possibilities are endless with this quality of bread.



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Family Centsability was not monetarily compensated for this post. A product sample was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.


Chuck & Friends Tumblin’ Chuck vehicle – perfect for preschoolers this Christmas!



Meet Chuck. Chuck is one of the newest interactive characters, taking part in an entire line of toys and devices for children called Chuck & Friends.  One particular toy from the line, the Tumblin’ Chuck, promises to keep young toddlers entertained for hours on end.  With over 80 phrases and sounds, flips, somersaults, push-ups, and reacting to your child’s actions, Tumblin’ Chuck will entertain a four year old just as well as it does my 19 month old.

My son loved the toy at first sight, but to be fair, he gravitates toward anything and everything new.  After getting it out, he kept entertained with the toy, leaving the box behind (it takes a good toy to be more exciting than the empty box!).  When he pushed it away, it rolled or somersaulted back toward him.  When he grabbed it underneath, Chuck got ticklish and laughed, with moving eyes and all.  Chuck has too many expressions to discover in one play session, and tries to get your child to interact whenever possible.  He’ll ask you to put something in his bucket, do push-ups with him, and remind you to play with him.  Our son isn’t quite old enough to play along with everything – he doesn’t care about push-ups and falls over when doing somersaults – but he loves the interaction and laughs when Chuck says something silly or makes a farting noise (some of you might not like that, but hey, kids think it is hilarious and no harm done).



Things to keep in mind – while my 19 month old son loves the toy, it is also a toy we put away when we aren’t watching him play with it. It’s designed for age 3 and up.  Younger kids can enjoy it, but it has moving parts including the bucket, eyes, mouth and wheels.  These parts attract attention of young curious minds, so a younger child is likely to pull on the bucket until it breaks off, or hold the wheels to stop them from spinning.  Bottom line, it is a fun toy for any age, but if your child is under 3 you should monitor their play or expect a broken toy.

I highly recommend the Tumblin’ Chuck, and one of my favorite things about it is that it is part of an entire line of toys.  The concept is similar to the Fisher Price Laugh & Learn Puppy, and our son has enjoyed seeing him pop up in multiple types of toys and playing the same songs so that he recognizes them.  The Chuck & Friends line is our next step, with toys designed for the next stage of development and a recognizable figure to tie it all together.

Requires 4 “C” batteries (demo batteries included).  Includes vehicle and instructions.



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Family Centsability was not monetarily compensated for this post. A product sample was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.


Review: LifeProof Weatherproof iPhone Case




If you are looking for a waterproof case for your iPhone, but don’t want bulky scuba gear attached to your phone, then you are looking for LifeProof.  LifeProof cases are designed for life.  We all have those times when we are around the pool, walking in the rain or needing to grab an important phone call while in the shower when we wish we had a waterproof case.  Waterproofing has traditionally involved a bulky, unattractive case that screamed security, but also shouted UGLY.  So ugly and bulky that it wasn’t going to be used unless you planned ahead, which doesn’t help much when your phone falls in the toilet!

With family in mind, let me start by saying this case is not very thick.  It is not the case you need if you plan to hand it over to a young toddler, as biting might ruin it.  If you have a toddler who is more interested in throwing things in the toilet or sink than chewing on them, keep reading.  I received a limited edition clear case for iPhone 4/4s to review, and have tested it in many situations you might encounter in daily life.



When you get the case, start by following the instructions provided by LifeProof precisely.  Not only will this save your phone, but it will save your warranty as well. 

The case is easy to install, and fits snugly without adding much weight or bulk to the phone.  The camera and flash are not affected due to a lens built in for them, and all speakers and microphones have specially designed membranes to pass sound out of the case.  You have to touch slightly harder to use the touch screen, but all touches and drags are registered as normal, even with water on the screen.

I used the case underwater in the sink, in the shower, outside in the sleet/snow, even held it in my wet hands while washing dishes.  The case did not leak in any of these situations.  I was surprised to find that not only did touches register even with water on the screen, but the sound was not affected by the case being in water either.  All buttons worked normally, though it is worth noting that the silence toggle is reversed when the case is on (push toward the back of the case to turn to loud, toward the front for silent).  



Two issues of inconvenience – the headphone port is not very wide, so only thin headphones will work without an adapter (the adapter also maintains the waterproof seal, so you can use waterproof headphones and go for a swim!), and the charging port cover only opens 90 degrees.  This means you have limited space to get the plug in the phone.  While I did not have an issue with this, I have family with LifeProof who only use the case when at the beach because of this.  A dock extender is available from LifeProof, but it will set you back $30.  While stores such as amazon have them much cheaper, most of the off brand do not extend far enough to fit the LifeProof.

This is definitely not the toughest case I have owned, in regard to impact resistance and feel, but what other case is both waterproof AND decent looking?  They even come in a wide array of colors!  Issues aside, the case is great and offers top of the line protection with a fraction of the bulk that most competitors add.  With all the construction, with saw dust, weather, plumbing and other hazards, my husband will be keeping this case on his phone from now on. 

I highly recommend LifeProof cases now that I have tried one out.  I expected the thin form to mean less protection, and I was wrong.  If you are on the fence, and you want something waterproof to use more than a couple of times, go get a LifeProof.  Make sure to follow all instructions exactly when you receive the case to ensure you do everything to keep your phone safe.  LifeProof is not responsible for damage to your phone, and saving a minute on case installation is not worth killing your device.

LifeProof is available for iPhone 4/4s, iPhone 5, iPad Gen 2/3/4 and iPod Touch Gen 4.  The LifeProof case for Samsung Galaxy S III is on its way and will be available soon.  Currently there are limited edition cases  available for the iPhone 4/4s including the Clear Back cases and the Tactical Colors.   

Read more specifications and testing done by LifeProof here.



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Family Centsability was not monetarily compensated for this post. A product sample was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.

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