My parenting poetry book on sale this weekend only!

Happy Thanksgiving! I have a gift for you out of gratitude for your faithful readership.

Poetry of a Hobo Mama: The First Three YearsThis deal on my book of parenting poetry, Poetry of a Hobo Mama: The First Three Years, has never happened before! For this Thanksgiving weekend ONLY, the price has been reduced to $9.99 with FREE shipping!

Here's how it works — you can buy either from Amazon or directly from me for the same price:
Buy the book at Amazon, where I've reduced the price to $9.99 through Tuesday, November 27. The price is regularly $11.99. The paperback is eligible for FREE Super-Saver Shipping on Amazon orders over $25, so either fill up your cart to get to that level or pay Amazon's shipping fee. (I unfortunately can't provide discount codes on Amazon.)


Buy directly from me at my CreateSpace author's store. Enter code 4PV6AMYR for $3.59 off each copy, bringing the reduced price down to $6.40 plus shipping. CreateSpace shipping starts at $3.59, so it will be $9.99 with FREE shipping, and each additional copy in the same shipment will be cheaper and cheaper since the shipping decreases per item the more you buy!


Natural Parents Network Holiday Gift Guide

Natural Parents Network Holiday Gift Guide

Welcome to the Natural Parents Network Holiday Gift Guide!

If you need to complete your holiday shopping, find a birthday present for a friend, or just treat yourself to something special, the NPN Holiday Gift Guide has something for everyone. But what's even better, the NPN Holiday Gift Guide is a great opportunity to shop consciously and to support many naturally minded small businesses. The companies that have provided items for review and giveaway are almost exclusively made up of small businesses or work-at-home families.

Below you will find information on 74 companies from 25 of our NPN volunteers. The companies are giving away 89 products and gift certificates, for a total combined value of $2,550. I am one of the participating businesses, offering for giveaway TWO copies of my book, Poetry of a Hobo Mama.

As you scroll through the Gift Guide, we encourage you to click on the links for each of the reviews — look for the links to our volunteers' blogs in each heading (i.e., "From ABC Company via Blog Name" — the "Blog Name" has the link to the review). Our volunteers have crafted thoughtful posts on each participating company with pictures of and links to products that are simply perfect for our natural parenting families. And while we've split our Gift Guide into sections ("Perfect for Kids" and "Family and Home"), you'll discover that many of the stores offer goodies that people of all ages will enjoy.

You can enter to win every giveaway by using the Rafflecopter system below. Please note that every review post has the same Rafflecopter script, but you may enter only one time, at one site.

Even if you don't win one of our fabulous prizes, please consider spending part of your gift-giving budget at one of these small businesses. By supporting small businesses, you are helping families, boosting local economies, and supporting ethical practices of manufacturing, production and selling. We know that budgets are tighter and finances may be difficult, but by purchasing from small, family-owned businesses, you know you will be receiving quality items made with appropriate business practices and personal customer service, all while supporting another family's endeavors.

Many of the companies have included coupon codes — take advantage of them! You can find the coupon codes in the heading of each company/giveaway listing. (Please note that coupons are not good on shipping fees unless otherwise stated.)

Without further ado, here is the NPN Holiday Gift Guide. We've broken the Gift Guide down into two sections (click the links below to jump to either section):

Perfect For Kids

Family and Home


Perfect For Kids

From Earthslings via Code Name: Mama — Win a $35 Gift Certificate toward pouch slings, dolls, dress-up costumes, and more
Shop now with coupon code KIDS2012 and get 10% off through December 31, 2012!

Earthslings began as a pouch sling company; Sam has since expanded to make pouch slings for you and your child, dolls, children's dress-up goodies, and much more! All of Sam's products are handcrafted from eco-friendly 100% natural fabrics, and where possible, she upcycles vintage fabrics into her creations. Our "attached family doll set" is soft, sweet, and just right for little hands. If your holiday shopping list includes mamas of little ones, be sure to take a look at the many pouch sling patterns and colors for mama and child, the sweet selection of dolls, and the other toys and accessories Sam creates. Then swing by Code Name: Mama and read how to wear your little one in a hip carry in your brand new pouch sling.

Be sure to like Earthslings on Facebook and comment on 30+ Ideas for Activities Advent Calendars, one of the informative posts at Code Name: Mama!



From Pip & Bean via Hobo Mama — Win a Superhero Kit: Reversible Cape, Mask, and Arm Bands (ARV $25)

Visit Pip & Bean for customized capes and adorable dress-up costumes. You can buy birthday party kits or sets just right for siblings — or even weddings! My five-year-old put on his cape, mask, and armbands — and then would not take them off, even to sleep. He loves flying around like the mini superhero he is! Stop by Hobo Mama to learn more about daily life with a superhero.

Be sure to like Pip & Bean on Facebook and follow Hobo Mama on Pinterest!



From Wild Arbutus via Anktangle — Win a Handmade Baby Hat or Plush Crocheted Toy (ARV $25)
Shop now with coupon code NPNGIFTS10 and get 10% off all orders through December 31, 2012!

Visit Wild Arbutus for handcrafted crochet children's toys and knit baby and children's hats and headbands. Daniel and I love the knit hat Melissa custom created for him; it's adorable, functional, and fun and whimsical to boot! I keep eyeing the growing selection of toys in this shop, and I just know Daniel would love to play with his very own snuggly nudibranch. Stop by Anktangle for gluten-free recipes to keep you going through the holiday season.

Be sure to like both Wild Arbutus and Anktangle on Facebook!




Giveaway: ourfeminist{play}school review of Poetry of a Hobo Mama

I'm so happy to have a giveaway at ourfeminist{play}school for TWO ebook copies of Poetry of a Hobo Mama. From the lovely review:

Poetry of a Hobo Mama: The First Three Years
Lauren’s ability to capture the reality and heart-galloping love of parenting is unique in its honesty and breadth. Through the flow of her concise language a reader is taken into bedrooms, hospitals, and the intimacy of a nursing moment; the depth that this poet is able to extract from a single stanza is not to go unnoticed.

Too often when parenting we are reminded by those who have taken the journey ahead of us to snap photos, to write it all down. […] Lauren Wayne’s poetry gives parents the gift of retracing their own steps through their own winding road of parenting by sharing what is most intimate and paradoxically the most commonly shared among us. A gem in the parenting poetry genre.

Aw! I'm so honored and touched by her words.

Read the full review and enter the giveaway by November 25 over at ourfeminist{play}school. This would make a lovely holiday gift for a parent in your life who could use some poetry!


What not to name your blog

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What you can name your blog is Lola. I totally approve.

In roaming around the parenting blogosphere, I've seen my share of ill-fitting blog names and usernames (such as on Twitter or forums) that don't grow with the blog or the blogger. This idea list is not meant to snicker at anyone who chose a name poorly, just to offer some guidance as you name — or rename — your blog. I will focus primarily on parenting blogs since that's my realm, but many of these suggestions can apply when choosing any blog or username.

Don't go current.

Yes, when you selected your Twitter handle Rebecca23, you were 23 — but guess what? You'll be 24 next year. And then even older the next! Shocking, I know. Try to pick names that will stand the test of time. More on this same theme in subsequent rules.

Don't name it after your children.

I can't tell you how many blogs I see named "My Two Angels" or usernames like "MommyofAiden." And then said mommy has another angel or two, or Aiden becomes a big brother, and now the header has the "two" crossed out and "four" written in on top, or "Plus Annabelle" is scrawled alongside Aiden. I know it's tempting to declare your passion for your offspring. But if you're not sure sure sure you're "done," don't slight your future kidlets for the current one(s). (This can also extend, sadly enough, to naming based on a present partner, or even a pet. I'd keep things focused on you, since you're the one aspect of your blog that will stay put.)
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