I know I've talked a lot about the toys I saw at Sweet Suite and Blogger Bash, but the conference offered so much more!
As much as I'm avoiding thinking about it, school is only a week away now so I am in back to school mode. I was honestly surprised by how many brands were there that were more than toys, and instead really great products for every day! Here's a few of my favorites that will help me get back into the swing of school!
You can't head back to school without a new backpack and lunch box, right? I am in love with the designs from Bixbee. They offer backpacks, lunchboxes, even duffles that make great dance bags! They have a couple great promos going on and if you order an animal bag, you get a free lunchbox! I love good savings. They're even better when they are adorable! I love that the bag holds items horizontally to spread the weight over the shoulders, rather than up and down the back and they seem to be really well made. Emma has been loving her duffle bag! And did I mention you can have them personalized?
Another great item to pack in those bags? Drink in the Box and Snack in the Box containers! I mean, we all know how unnecessary extra sugar is for our kids, but did you know the average juice box can have up to 7 teaspoons of sugar? No thanks. My kids are already hyper enough. We've switched to lots of infused waters or watered down juices to keep them from all the extra sugars. While I've found lots of bottles that allow me to do this, none quite stack up to the Drink in the Box containers. The containers are made with a BPA, BPS and Phthalates free material called TRITAN™, have an attached straw and are leak free. I love to put a couple of fresh berries in the containers, fill it with water, and the kids are happy to drink from them all day.
I already know my kids' lunchboxes are going to be filled with Drink in the Box and Snack in the Box containers! You can pick up a few of your own here (aff).
If you're looking to pack up more than snacks, you could always pack up a lunch in Sistema box. I am seriously in love with the Bento Box and need to add one or two to the growing collection of Sistema containers we have!
Once the kids have their bags packed up, it's time to get them dressed! I am in love with LittleMissMatched and Triple Flip!
It's really important to me that I find clothes that empower my little girl and are age appropriate. I hate how quick girl's clothing makes girls grow up. I want my daughter in clothes that aren't low cut or too short. I want her to be comfortable but still feel fashionable. LittleMissMatched has bright, exciting and fashionable clothes but they are totally age appropriate for girls.
My favorite pieces are the Hi Bye Baseball tees and Cotton Candy leggings. Emmalee asked if I'd buy her the Royal Cat sweatshirt! In addition to clothes, LittleMissMatched carries lots of accessories, like hats, notebooks, and bags, and great shoes! One of the most fun things about LittleMissMatched is that they sell their socks in packs of 3, and none technically match! Ha.
Triple Flip is another amazing shop directed at tweens. There's an obvious gap in clothing for tweens and Triple Flip is doing amazing addressing it. For starters, they don't use models. They use everyone, seriously, you can sign up here and when they're local to you for a photo shot, they'll let you know! The whole brand is designed around empowering girls and creating clothes that fit their lifestyles, not creating a girl to fit the clothes. Triple Flip carries everything from leggings and shirts, to skirts, jackets, hats, and clothes for sports like dance, gymnastics, and skating.
But let's be honest, no matter how gorgeous your new back to school items are, or how good you look, we all feel a bit of anxiety when starting anything new, and a new school year is no exception. I really love the concept behind Worry Eaters, when you're nervous or afraid or worried about something, you write or draw it on a piece of paper, unzip the Worry Eaters mouth, and tuck the fear inside. Then the Worry Eater takes care of your concerns. As someone who has battled anxiety, it's so great to see a child friendly way to cope with those feelings.
Now, I know many of my readers have smaller children, but lots also have older students heading back to school/college or are looking for a few back to school items for themselves.
I have already told David I'm grabbing myself a new tote bag, a new phone case, and a new agenda to get me ready for the school year. Whaaaaaaat? Teachers need new stuff each year too! :)
Zazzle makes great custom items, like tote bags and mugs, that are great quality. I'm a hug sucker for mugs, I have like 100. I always buy them when we go somewhere (seriously I have the whole Starbucks/Disney set). One's that give me a chuckle or motivate me are my favorites, like some of these ones.
Shoulder bags are practical and these ones are gorgeous. I love that my favorite ones on the site basically have my initial and Emma's name on them already!
I'd seriously monogram everything if I could. I've been looking at these new sparkle cases from Speck and think they'd look perfect with a monogram, right? I love that Speck offers so many styles for so many different devices.
Another great new product I saw at Blogger Bash to help me get ready for back to school is TUL at Office Max. It's a discbound system notebook that is so convenient! I LOVE notebooks and planners; I mean I had 3 planners last year and I personalize notebooks for school and home so these drew me right in. Office Max is currently rolling out more items that word in the notebooks, so I'm excited to see what else they come out with.
I also grabbed a Finder's Key Purse at Blogger Bash. I can't tell you how many time I would get to my car and have to dig for my keys since they fell to the bottom of my very large school tote. It's super obnoxious, and if I'm being honest, not very safe. Schools are not the completely safe space they once were and having your keys at your fingertips is much safer. I'm picking one up for my sister too; as well as their drink test kit. I know it's scary and not something we want to think about but my sister is a gorgeous, friendly young woman who has a good heart. She lives on a college campus and while I wish I didn't have to think about it, I do, and I can't think of anything better as a back to school necessity for her.
And finally, the cook book Lick Your Plate by Bite Me More (aff link to buy it here) will be coming in so handy after next week! Working all day makes it more difficult to come home and cook dinner and do the night time routine but I'm excited to make some of these delicious looking, easy recipes!
It's crazy how much work it takes to get ready to go back but the kids are excited for their first days of day care and kindergarten!
Even more exciting? A few of the brands are offering a giveaway to you!
The winner will receive a prize pack that includes gifts from Drink in the Box, a $30 credit to LittleMissMatched, a phone case from Speck, and a Worry Eater Doll!
Contest is open to US residents only. Prizes will be shipped by the individual companies.
Winner will be chosen on Tuesday August 30th and will have 48 hours after being sent the email to claim or a new winner will be chosen.