Back to School Products 2014



2 days ago the boys and I returned from 2 months on the road having a wild adventure.  Details will be coming to the blog soon, but in the mean time KSL was ready for me to do a TV segment on Back to School Products.  Say what?! 

My heart hurt a little watching friends and family all over the country posting those pictures of their kids on the 1st day of school.  Could summer really be coming to an end? Not for this Toad.  We have a few weeks until school starts & will be be living up every second. :) 

In the mean time...if I have to think about school coming...finding these great products eases the transition back & I think you'll like them!

So, here you go!  Great products for school...
(You can catch me talking about these on KSL CH 5 at 5:15 and 6:15 AM Friday August 15.)

1).  Clever Crates Folding Utility Boxes (clevercrates.com)

These little crates can be so compact and then simply pop up for use! Clever and practical. Great for a dorm room or any student that needs a bit of organization in the back of their car. 

Company Product Description:

Pop'em up, fold'em down, Clever Crates are the smartest, easiest way to
organize and transport household items. Perfect for transporting a college
student's items from home to dorm and keeping them organized and easily
portable at school.  The secret is the unique lightweight and collapsible
lift, pop and pack design that creates a spacious container that can be
folded, stacked and stored away almost anywhere.  It is the perfect tool for
space-saving and efficient storage.

Retail Price: $11.99 - $19.99 depending on size 
Website: clevercrates.com

#2 Sachi Fashion Lunch Handbags (sachi-bags.com)

If you're looking for a lunch bag that doesn't look as much like a lunch bag here you go!  Packing a lunch just got hip, easy, and fun!

Company Product Description:

Sachi Lunch Handbags are insulated, fashionable lunch bags, great for school
or work. Stylish and roomy enough to double as a handbag, while effectively
keeping food hot or cold as desired. Easily wipes clean with a damp cloth.
Handles fold down for easy fit in the refrigerator. Zips closed and handles
fold down to the sides so that you may lay it flat, allowing for easy
refrigerator storage. Comes in a variety of styles and colors. 

Retails: $9.99 - $25.99
Website: sachi-bags.com

#3 Sound Oasis White Noise Machine (soundoasis.com)

I wish I could have had one of these in college!  Who knows, maybe I would have gotten bit more shut eye and higher test scores. :)

I love having white noise everywhere we go & I love sleep. :) This handy little noise maker from Oasis is the best little thing for every family.  If you kids going to bed at different times during the school year this is a great way to drown out noise around the house.  Happy bedtime! 

Company Product Description:

The Sound Oasis White Noise Machine is the ultimate version on the market,
with patent pending white noise generation technology that provides 10
different white noise sound options for perfect tone selection and strong 3"
speaker for high quality sound.  The Sound Oasis has a sound range and
adjustability more than double other products on the market, allowing many
more users to find a white noise frequency that works for them.  Perfect for
dorm room use to block out noise from outside, common areas and other rooms.

Retail: $49.99
Website: soundoasis.com

#4  Sound Oasis Pillow Speakers (soundoasis.com)

If you want to listen to something other than white noise to catch some zzzzz's or ease a bit of stress, these little speakers are great.  You just stick them under or to the sides of your pillow and then connect your favorite tunes via phone or mp3 player!  Great for any student ready to relax.

The Sound Oasis Pillow Speakers allow users to enjoy their favorite music or
sounds in optimal relaxation and comfort.  They are high fidelity,
ultra-thin stereo speakers that can be positioned under or in the core of
any pillow, allowing users to surround their head with sound for enhanced
therapy or privacy.  Just use its 73 inch cord to plug in any 3.5 mm plug
compatible iPod/MP3 player, CD player, television, radio, computer/laptop or
Sound Oasis sound therapy system and enjoy.  Includes in-line volume

Retail: $22.99
Website: soundoasis.com

#5 Nufoot (nufoot.com)

Slippers for the dorm are a must!  These little washable slippers are a great way to keep your feet protected from anything and everything you may encounter.  They are cute and comfy. 

Nufoot is the first and only neoprene footwear, great for use in dorms and
around campus.  Waterproof, super-stretchy, easy to clean and sturdy enough
to wear every day.  Additional features include ergonomic designs and
anti-skid soles.  Comes in multiple sizes and colors. 

Retail:  $9.99/pair
Website: nufoot.com
+Emily Ashby


Camera Bag for Women, Perfect for Summer Travel

There are only a few hours left, but I had to share this great deal with you!

Camera Coats + GroopDealz = Happy Cameras!

If you've ever left your camera behind because it "too much trouble" you must stop and listen.  (We all know how big and bulky traditional camera bags can be!) Camera Coats are the perfect solution...they are slim, waterproof, padded and ready to go whether you do. Seriously.

Now you can throw your camera into your carry on bag, purse, or hang it around your neck without worry! Never miss capturing that special memory with your camera again.

GroopDealz is offering 40% off for only a few more hours. If you miss the deal be sure to email me at emily@cameracoats.com & we'll see what I can do for you...my faithful reader! :)

Watch for new styles and great deals here:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/cameracoats
Instagram: @camera_coats
Pinterest: #cameracoats

Now, go for it! Summer is calling and your camera wants to capture it!
+Emily Ashby


Easy DIY Summer Party Ideas on KSL

{Summer Party Tips For Any Gathering}
Thank-you summer.  Thank-you for bring the warmth of the sun, the cool of the pool, and the smell of the BBQ grill.

My fondest memories of childhood happened in the summertime. Family gatherings, beach trips, camping, picking berries...I think you all probably have similar feelings about summer. Now that I'm the "grown up" planning the event schedule for the summer I want my kids to love it as much as I did so I love to make each activity as easy and fun as possible.  

Over the years I have learned a few things about a having a successful summer party & I'm going to share a few of my favorite party activities with you! You will also be able to catch me on KSL Ch 5 in Salt Lake City (NBC affiliate) at 5:45 AM tomorrow morning talking about these fun ideas! 

{Easy Ideas for Any Outdoor Party}

Toad's Gathering Tip: Whether I'm in charge of a big family reunion or just getting together with friends,  I always like to have a little something ready to keep everyone busy and happy.  (For some great reunion ideas you can see my grandpa's 95th birthday party. My siblings, their wives, and my cousins are pretty amazing and had some pretty great things prepared!) 

Here are some of my most recent favorite summer party activities that are super easy, but have been big hits!

{Water Bottle Labels}

Bottle labels are the easiest way I know to add a little "party" to any party! 4th of July, sports team party, family reunions, birthdays...you name it, you can do it! These "Summer Party" printables are available from this previous post. Ah, I love summer. 

Sports Team Parties are another fun place to feature labels!

{Home Cotton Candy Machine}
Yes, a homemade cotton candy machine.  For Aidan's 5th birthday party last summer I ordered one off of Amazon for $40 and it was the hit of the party.  This is not the fastest cotton candy maker, but for a small crowd its a great fit. (If you have more than 15-20 people I would probably rent a big one.)

Joke: How many brother's does it take to make a serving of cotton candy? Answer: See picture below :)

{Water Fight Featuring Sponges!}
The staple of any summer fun is to have some sort of water fight.  If you don't want to worry about kids getting mad or hurt try these...sponges! They hold water you they make a good impact on your victim, but they don't hurt.  Another easy tip for any summer party

{DIY Huge Bubbles!}
Best ideas for any party. Seriously. Kids both young and old have the best time with these giant bubbles! Plus they are so easy to make!

These bubble makers are made of straws and string. Our ancestors would be proud. 

Yahoo! So fun! This was another hit at Aidan's birthday party last summer. Loved it.

Bubble Recipe
6 cups of water
1/2 cup blue Dawn dish detergent
1/2 cup corn starch
1 TBL baking powder
1 TBL Glycerine

Add all of the ingredients together and mix gently. Let set overnight.  Have the time of your life!

{Homemade Snow Cone Machine!}
Need I say more? Long gone are the days of the Snoopy Snow Cone Machine. Man, I love that thing as a kid...but boy was it SLOW!

This little gem makes cooling off in the summer so easy.  I don't know anyone who doesn't appreciate a snow cone.  Even my dad who is diabetic and make a nice slushy, put sugar-free syrup on it, and enjoy a treat with the rest of us!

Amazon: $25

{Happy Summer}
Whatever you do this summer...make it a fun adventure! Life's too short not to enjoy the simple things...right?!

XOXO, Toady
+Emily Ashby

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