May 29, 2010

More About The Valley Mom

It's very important that all my loyal readers know that this site is created not as an advertising site, but as a true referral based site. All of the products, services, stores and anything listed has been something that I have personally tested, tried, used and LOVED. Remember, everyone is different and you may not love something as much as I did, but I can attest to the fact that all posts are, tested and typically approved by more than just me, The Valley Mom. I have hand picked more than a dozen Mom's to come along this journey with me to get a lot of feedback! If you have ever tried anything from TheValleyMom's recommendations and you were delighted or not satisfied ... please send me an email letting me know what and why so that I can let the owner of that product, service and/or store know!

If I get more than enough complaints about a service, product or store ... I will be removing them from all archive of this site. That means, if you have seen one of those listed previously and it is no longer on here: The Valley Mom is no longer referring it to be tried by anyone!

If I get more than enough compliments about a service, product or store ... I will be listing it at the end of the year as The Valley Mom's Top 5 picks!

Please be a part of this site with me and know that all feedback is welcome!

Thank you so much for reading!


May 28, 2010

Cutest Headbands EVER!!!

Alison Beth Company - Children's Accessories

Alison Beth Company Children's Accessories is a high fashion line of adorable and stylish Headbands and embellished Hats.

The ABC collection can be seen on the most stylish children from coast to coast.

These headbands are quite simply the cutest girls accessories I have ever seen! And I swear it's not just because Alison and I have been friends for 26 years... THESE ARE A MUST HAVE!

I mean ... look at how cute they are! Not only are these headbands a must-have, but they make for a perfect gift! If I had a girl, I would probably own the entire collection. Please take a look at all of her styles by clicking here.

These headbands have amazing color, fantastic style, make any little girl look like an absolute doll, are incredibly soft and comfortable and are hand-made with much care.

I don't think I need to say much about these "to die for" headbands as the pictures truly say it all! While their website is under construction, you may visit their facebook page by clicking here or you may email ABC at or you may call 646.320.0855 from 9a-5p EST. They will be able to answer all your questions and send you more photographs of their current summer line.

There are also a limited number of headbands available right here in the Valley at The Haute Closet! Please email for details on how you can come and get yours!

Hurry up and get your ABC Headband today!

May 25, 2010

Pilates Promotion ... BEST Pilates, BEST Deal!

My body has changed overnight!

I owe much of that to Firm & Fit Pilates!

And now you can too ... Do something to get firm and fit!

Firm & Fit Pilates is offering readers a special limited time promotion!!! Want to find out about this incredible offer and HUGE SAVINGS?

Call Firm & Fit Pilates & mention "The Valley Mom" to find out how 818.331.4070

CLICK HERE for their website!

You can also find Firm & Fit Pilates on Facebook CLICK HERE to be redirected.

May 24, 2010

AMAZING Swim Lessons in West Hills

I cannot believe how AMAZING this swim instructor is!
Dylan went right to her, got right in the 90+ degree water and did EVERYTHING she asked him to do!
If you want your little one to take swim lessons ... now is the time and this is the place!
(I have contacted 5 different schools/instructors, this is my fave especially for the price)

"Let's have fun and be SAFE in the water"
(818) 404-0700
Call or Text, she is busy with lessons throughout the day but she will get back to you!

Don't wait to call, make sure to say "The Valley Mom" sent you and you will get:
12 lessons for the price of 10 for only $250!
Hurry up and call to receive this special discount during the month of July!

I promised pictures and I kept a promise!
His progress is documented below!

The swim lessons are conveniently located at her house in West Hills right off of Valley Circle, very easy to find. Her pool is heated, so the kids are happy to dunk right in! There is a tent above the pool so there are no children crying that the sun is in their eyes. There are 3 instructors in the pool giving lessons. This is not Mommy&Me swim, you watch ... they teach. Or if you are like me, you take a bazillion pictures and yell "hooray" 20 times to your little one while they teach! ;)

During Dylan's first lesson he blew bubbles every time she asked, he kicked his legs as she sang it to him, he crawled the edge of the pool with his fingertips like a monkey just like she asked, he jumped into her arms when told, he picked up toys and rings from the steps, when she let him go for the 2 seconds, he came right back up! Plus, she had great baby goggles for sale right there cheaper than anywhere else ($9) and he wore them and LOVED them. Laura is truly amazing! And best of all ... she has a treat basket that keeps these kids wanting to do as they are told and to keep coming back! Genius!

I am not being silly either ... I know it was Dylan's first day! But I got to see 5 other kids in between the time we got there, swam and left. They were ALL swimming, kicking their legs, doing breast stroke and even floating on their backs! I was so impressed! I would recommend her to all of you Mommies and Daddies out there.

After the first day, Dylan started to figure out that he had to have his swim lesson and would start to whimper a bit. There were days he cried, days he laughed, days he zoned, and days he loved it. Either way...  taking these lessons at this young, ripe age was the best thing we could have done for Dylan this summer. Every time we are in a pool, he is happy and confidant that he can do it! He blows bubbles, kicks his legs, when he goes under water he keeps his eyes open and blows air out and he can walk along the edge of the pool with his hands! It's nice to know while being supervised he is a confidant water goer! Yippee! I truly suggest these lessons to all parents with small children who plan to take your children swimming in their lifetime! It's an amazing gift. 

I took video and pictures every day for 2 weeks while Dylan had his lesson so you could see the amazing progress for yourself!


The pictures say it all ... he got acclimated with the water, dunked while breathing out (not holding his breath), blew bubbles when getting ready to swim, learned to kick his legs, learned to walk along the edge of the pool with his hands, learned to get out of the pool and even learned how to swim a little bit all on his own! 

I am still going to the lessons ... so Dylan will be a safe swimmer! ;)

May 23, 2010

Mommy words to live by

My Favorite Mommy Words of Wisdom I Read EVERY Morning:

How To Really Love a Child
Be there. Say yes as often as possible. Let them bang on pots and pans. If they are crabby, put them in water. If they are unlovable, love yourself. Realize how important it is to be a child. Go to a movie theatre in your pajamas. Read books out loud with joy. Invent pleasures together. Remember how really small they are. Giggle a lot. Surprise them. Say no when necessary. Teach feelings. Heal your own inner child. Learn about parenting. Hug trees together. Make loving safe. Bake a cake and eat it with no hands. Go find elephants and kiss them. Plan to build a rocket ship. Imagine yourself magic. Make lots of forts with blankets. Let your angel fly. Reveal your own dreams. Search out the positive. Keep the gleam in your eye. Mail letters to God. Encourage silly. Plant licorice in your garden. Open up. Stop yelling. Express your love. A lot. Speak kindly. Paint their tennis shoes. Handle with caring.
Children Are Miraculous.

*you can find this poster Here.

May 22, 2010

Parent Activities Sent to your email!

Do you ever find yourself wondering, "what should I do with my little one today?"
Answer doesn't always come as quick or as easy as you would like!

That's why I personally subscribe to Productive Parenting!

I get a daily email with an activity to do for me and my son. You can add as many children as you would like (from infant up to 5 years) and each activity is set to your child's age range! There are over 1800 activities.

I came across this site when I did a Parenting review on it and absolutely LOVED it! I won't lie, I do not use the activities sent to me every single day. But I always know I have one that is planned, fun and educational for Dylan!

Here's what Susan & Emily, creators of the site, have to say about their mission:
"Productive Parenting provides one new activity suggestion each day based on your child's birth date! If you have soap, shoes, rulers, and rocks in or around your home, you are ready to begin! Our activities require little to no preparation or materials; but don't let their simplicity fool you! Activities build on one another from infancy to age five to provide a solid foundation for learning and, at the same time, promote lasting parent-child relationships. Check out our sample activities and see for yourself why Productive Parenting is quickly becoming the premier activity resource for parents."

Sign up today! It's Free!
Click Here to be directed to their site now.

A quick example of a daily email:

Productive Parenting - Equipping parents, developing families

Hi Erica,

Today's activity for you and Dylan is Puppets.

Share and connect with other parents when you:

  • Rate and review activities
  • Submit activities of your own
  • Visit our forum
Happy Baby
Link to your activity not working? We have little ones too and understand that things don't always work out as planned, but for this "glitch," we have you covered! Just cut and paste the following into your browser:

A couple examples of a daily activities:

Where Do They Live?

Target Age:
Early Two-Year Old
Materials You Will Need:
sea animal figures, jungle animal figures, pictures of: jungle, ocean
What To Do:
Matching is a skill that prepares your child for reading and math. Collect jungle and sea animal figures and put them in separate baskets. Place pictures of the jungle and ocean in front of your child. Take out one of the figures. "Does it live in the jungle or the ocean?" Put the animal next to the correct picture. Move back and see what your child will do with the activity. If your child just wants to play with the figures, that is fine.
Activity Contributor:
Beth Bronsil, M. Ed.

Flower Arranging

Target Age:
Middle Three-Year Old
Materials You Will Need:
variety of artificial flowers, small vases or jars
What To Do:

This activity will give your child an opportunity to be creative! Present your child with an assortment of artificial flowers and vases or jars. You and your child can have fun today creating beautiful bouquets together. After the arrangements are made, you and your child can distribute them around your home.

Use real flowers, if available.

You can unsubscribe at any time, but it's definitely worth having in your email-box once a day! Trust me!

Sign up today! It's Free!
Click Here to be directed to their site now.

May 21, 2010


Who needs a manicure and pedicure? 
I know I do! 
Treat Yourself!


My favorite manicurist in town! 
I have followed these ladies for the last 15 years!
Cindy and Lani at Personne Complet in Woodland Hills
Call (818) 224 - 2035

*New Clients - Make sure to tell them The Valley Mom sent you and you will get my special discount on your first visit!

May 17, 2010

A Quick Mommy Trick Fun Fact for Summer

Summer is upon us Mommies! 
That means sand in every orifice and crevice of our kids' bodies!

Quick Trick I learned by accident last summer ... 

Johnsons Baby Powder, Original, #3014 - 22 Oz 

If you just rub baby powder on any part of your little one's (or your own) body ... sand comes right off. Sandy feet? Baby powder it off! Sandy diaper or bathing suit? Baby powder it out of that tush! 

If you want Talc-Free Baby Powder, try California Baby's Non-Talc Powder or Baby Burt's Bees Non-Talc Powder.  

Best trick I ever came across. 

Thought I would share. ;)


May 15, 2010

An AMAZING Spray Tanner!!!

Spray Tanning at it's Finest!

Spray di Sole
owned by: Svetlana Feller

I met Spray di Sole's team at The Luxe Life beauty event a few weeks back. They were there as a vendor and as the Sunless Tanning Expert. Of course, this was the first and most eye-catching stop for me! I immediately started to talk with one of Svetlana's assistants who was more than kind to answer all of my very difficult and tan-tricky questions. They pride themselves in being 100% organic and natural with DHA ingredients, so I quickly made the decision to try it out for myself! A few days later I got in contact with Svetlana who is very easy to get a hold of and extremely flexible on days and times. I nervously made my appointment, I unhappily let my previous tan fade and walked into Spray di Sole's studio in Studio City and was incredibly impressed off the bat! The studio is very serene and professional. With 2 tents to choose from, I eagerly got undressed to try out yet another Spray Tan artist. Svetlana makes you feel incredibly comfortable, she's sweet, smart and easy to talk to. Best of all... she just knows what she is doing and knows A LOT about the tanning business. After our long talk and getting to know this fellow Mommy of 2 boys, I quickly learned what a big business Spray di Sole is and how this entrepreneurial, single Mom is building her dream business into a tanning empire!  She has one color to chose from, and for someone like me who is used to telling a sprayer "I would like wedding tan with a shot of double dark and a twist of mocha", she made it simple and easy by saying " I have one color and we can adjust it to your liking". Ahhh .. that was a nice change! This is great for first time or indecisive tanners and this way you can let your professional lead you. Her clientele is obviously very happy as she has a long list of repeat customers with a few celebrity names to drop as well. Her tanning style is great and tanning machine is not cold so your newly shaven legs don't start growing back hair on the first spray. Plus she has a few tricks up her sleeve that I certainly took note of. Upon the end of my appointment, I already I knew I loved this studio, loved Svetlana and adored her irresistible color that I have never seen from any other sprayer! But, as any other professional tanorexic, I knew that the real telling would be 24 hours later after my first wash off. And, poof! It was like a dream come true color! A dark golden brown with a hint of deep red to give me that "I just lay in the sun, sunburn look". Now, DO NOT confuse red with orange. Orange is orange. Red, and especially deep red, leans toward the brown color all while giving you the natural touched by intense sun color. Svetlana and her Spray di Sole are TANNING GENIUS. Definitely lived up to her slogan ... The Perfect Tan! 

To book your in-studio or at-home appointment with Svetlana or any of her personally trained assistants, call Spray di Sole at (818) 454-4517 or email and be sure to CLICK HERE to visit her website to see her list of services ranging from spray tan, teeth whitening to buying in-home, self use spray tanning tools and products! Whether you are in Los Angeles, Las Vegas or San Diego ... Spray di Sole can give you a beautifully natural looking spray tan!

Ps, do not miss out on her self tanning products! So creative, so easy to use and most of all so necessary! Buy it from the website!

She comes highly recommended by me and I promise you, that says A LOT! ;) 
Happy Tanning!

Oh and most exciting part for you... 
the first 5 people to send me a message about this post get a 20% discount on their first spray with Spray di Sole! 
Hurry Up!
My Before and After tanning pictures just to show you how fabulous this color is (and how BRAVE I am):

May 14, 2010

Erica's Famous Gluten Free Banana Pancakes - Easy Recipe

My Favorite Gluten Free Recipe: 
Erica's Famous Gluten Free Banana Pancakes!

  • 2 Cups of Pamela's Gluten Free Baking and Pancake Mix -  Click Here to buy or go to Whole Foods
  • 1+1/2 Cups of water
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 Tbsp of organic applesauce (cinnamon applesauce better)
  • 3 drops of vanilla
  • Mix these ingredients in a bowl on medium, then add:
  • 2 Tbsp of Coconut Oil - Click Here to buy or go to Whole Foods
  • Mix these ingredients in on high to desolve
  • 1/3 Cup of Sugar (this is entirely up to you on amount, you decide what's right for your family)
  • 1 Tsp Salt (again, up to you on usage)
  • 1 Banana (or 2) - take a fork and smash banana to chunks and bits, add to mixture and spoon this in evenly
Flame up your griddle, if you have one Click Here to purchase one or use your pan. I personally use butter on my griddle for taste. This makes about 12 or more 4" pancakes. I store unused batter in an air tight container for up to 3 days in the fridge. Easy to take out and just plop on the griddle for the next day! 
My husband and son LOVE these even more than I do! Enjoy!

Please feel free to send me any Gluten Free recipes that you love too!

May 03, 2010

It's a staple ... a must have ... GET THIS SELF TANNER!

Fellow tanaholics and tanorexics...  
There are two self tanners that EVERY person should have in their possession! 
You wanted product and you wanted it cheap ... 
well, here it is!

Victoria's Secret Beach Sexy Self Tanner!

First and Foremost, buy the ENTIRE Limited Edition Collection if you are as serious/crazy as I am. Or just buy my 2 personal favorites out if the line:


My Favorite #1 Tanning Resource to have in your bathroom at all times and at any cost is ... tan in a can! 
I always love Victoria's Secret tan in a can! 

It's a must and if you don't have time to overnight tan, this is your one day tanning answer. Be tan in about 5 minutes. Wash it off later. Have a streak from a self tanning mishap? Spray this on and fix your tan for the day. 

If you click on the links now you can buy any 2 Beach Sexy Self Tanners for $20! Hurry before I buy it ALL! Stock up fast, as they take it off their shelves after summer. :(

My 1st Product Tip for all of you and I hope you enjoy it!
More to come ...