How To: Use Hashtags

If you know anything about us, you know that we love all things social media. From Twitter to Tumblr, Instagram to Facebook – we really don’t discriminate.

However, with the landscape of social media always influx, it’s hard to keep track of all that’s going on in the world. This is where hashtags come in. Hashtags are something you might be familiar with, particularly in Twitter. We are here to help you get up to speed using this super useful tool!

hashtag

Categorization

Hashtags are often used to categorize and group tweets to make it easier for people to follow a conversation, an event etc…

Next time you want to keep tabs on something, try searching for keywords in the search bar on Twitter. You’ll be pleasantly surprised to see the wave of information streaming your way.

Example: Tweets regarding the 2012 Presidential Debates used the hashtag #debates, to keep track of the online discussion.

Fun Fact: There were 7.2 million tweets during the second Presidential Debate – WOW

Discoverability 

Hashtags help get your tweet or Instagram photo discovered by others.

Some live by the philosophy that “the more hashtags, the better” and we’ve seen this trend especially on Instagram. We love hashtags and try and attach hashtags that we feel will peak people’s interests and let’s us share the things that inspire us seamlessly.

Example: #breakfast http://instagram.com/p/TGcG7WLQgN

Fun Fact: The most used hashtag on Instagram is (drum roll please)…. #love 

Have Fun 

There are no rules when it comes to social media, the beauty of it is that each person can make it their own – we love that.

Hashtag an inside joke with your friends or hashtag your own tweets so you can easily look back on it and see if anyone else joined in on your parade!

Example: http://go.totsy.com/WJ67nD #momsrule

Fun Fact: Beginning July 1, 2009, Twitter began to hyperlink all hashtags to search results containing all recent tweets mentioning the hashtag

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Thanksgiving Inspirations: Our Faves Across the Web

Our favorite holiday is coming up – Thanksgiving! Nothing says “love” like being surrounded by the ones you love and a good meal.  We rounded up some of our favorite Thanksgiving ideas, tips and more from around the web.  Check them out below.

1)  Satisfy that sweet tooth with this Yams and Apple in Caramel Sauce. It’s a spin on the sweet potato dish! Check out the full recipe here: http://www.justgetoffyourbuttandbake.com/

2)  This fun DIY is perfect for the kids as you prep for dinner.  Draw the tree trunk for the kids and have them write down what they’re thankful for this Thanksgiving.  After they’re done, you can frame it and hang it in the kids’ room.  Find this here: http://go.totsy.com/RAmza5

3) First time making a turkey this Thanksgiving?  Even if you’ve had the task of making the main course, there’s always room to learn more.  Check out this short video from foodwishes.com on prepping and roasting your turkey: http://go.totsy.com/TAHucZ

4)  Our favorite funny e-card: http://go.totsy.com/TAPuuG

5) Our favorite Instagram nail photo:  http://instagram.com/evelynnapoles

Summer Readiness

Memorial Day is this weekend!

Let’s talk summer because that’s what Memorial Day signifies right? The official start to the summer season. It is the day after which it’s okay to wear white without being judged. It’s the weekend pools across the nation start their official come-pee-in-us season. It’s a wonderful time of year! AND the kids are home ALL day EVERY day!

So here’s a Dumb Mom’s Guide to Summer Readiness: Do’s and Don’ts to Ensure You Don’t Lose Your Mind When Your Kids Crash Your Spot for the Summer!

DO:Snag yourself some cool summer gear! And by gear I do not mean Styrofoam swim noodles and arm floaties. I mean some cute summer dresses, stylish sandals, and perky accessories for mom!

DON’T: Bother worrying about what your kids are going to wear unless you’re going on vacation or to a special event then of course they are going to need some acceptable summer attire. Otherwise, summer should be your frugal season when it comes to kid clothing!

DO:Get yourself an amazingly delicious, shamelessly easy, go-to summer recipe. Mine is salsa. And, having this recipe in my arsenal secures me an endless summer of cook out invites!

DON’T: Show your I-can-throw-a-rockin-party-cards too early in the season. Personally, I don’t have any rockin-party cards to show. But if you do, I say you keep them on the down low until Labor Day!

DO: Make sure you have access to a lifeguard inhabited swimming pool. Head to the pool, stake out a spot on a loung-y pool chair, slide on your dark glasses and pretend to watch your children frolic in the pool for a few hours while you actually sleep off and on. As long as you have snacks and wake up periodically to dole them out along with a healthy dose of sun protector no one will be the wiser.

DON’T: Sign yourself up for any play dates at your house.Tell the kids to tell their friend’s parents to drop them off and pick them up at the swimming pool.You can still catch your afternoon nap, your kids will have something to occupy their time, if someone gets hurt you can blame the on-duty pool officials, and you can buy everyone ice cream from the truck before they go home making yourself look like the hometown hero you always knew you would be!SCORE!

Hope Memorial Day marks the start of a great summer season for you and your family!

About:

Dumb Mom has been wowing the Internet since 2008 when she launched her pretty-much-useless guide for parents, parenting BY dummies.  As it turns out her parenting advice is not generally good for more than a laugh, but sometimes that’s exactly what you need! You can Tweet with her online as @dumbparent, but don’t expect her to be serious.  It’s virtually impossible.

For up-to-date info on sales and other Totsy fun: follow us on Twitter (@totsyfan), Like us on Facebook (facebook.com/totsyfan), repin our boards on Pinterest (pinterest.com/totsyfan).

CelebrityBabyScoop Takes A Look At Five Celebrities Who Give Parenting Advice

Who do you turn to for parenting advice? Your mother, your friends or other
family members? Take a look at our list of 5 celebrities and their top parenting
advice.

Angelina Jolie

Academy Award-winning actress Angelina Jolie and her longtime love Brad Pitt
are parents to six kids! And although they have such a big brood, their 5-year-
old sure knows how to make headlines with her tomboy image!

Angelina has said that Shiloh is “fascinating,” and elaborated on the fact that her
daughter dresses “like a little dude”.

“I would never be the kind of parent to force somebody to be something they are not,” Angelina said. “I think that is just bad parenting. Children should be allowed to express themselves in whatever way they wish without anybody judging them because it is an important part of their growth.”


Katie Holmes

Dawson’s Creek alum Katie Holmes and husband, Tom Cruise, have a 5-year-old fashionista on their hands! Katie came clean about Suri’s lack of weather-appropriate attire, admitting it can be “embarrassing.”

“Recently, Suri and I were taking a walk and a fight got started because it was cold outside and she didn’t want to wear her coat,” Katie said. “My philosophy is, well,fine, because after a block of walking you’re going to ask me for your coat. So the pictures of her [without a coat in cold weather] are sort of embarrassing.”

Jennifer Garner

Jennifer Garner welcomed her third child, son Samuel, earlier this week with
husband Ben Affleck. She is one of our favorite celebrity moms year after
year, and when she talks about role modeling for her daughters Violet, 6, and
Seraphina, 3, it’s easy to see why she gets the popular vote.

“I try really hard to put my phone down [ever since] my daughter pretended to take something out of one of her little purses and was like, ‘I’ve got an email – hang on one second,’” Jen said.

The Alias alum went on to encourage mothers to stop judging one another, and
start supporting each other.

“I will tell you what I can’t abide – and I think the Internet has really created a space for it – women criticizing other women and mothers criticizing other mothers,” Jen shared. “It just makes me crazy, whether it’s between staying at home, going to work, how long you breast-feed, if you use formula. I feel like we should just assume everyone is doing the best they can. Women should take care of each other, not tear each other down. I would just like to see a mother who really believes that she has done it all so right, you know what I mean?”

Michael J. Fox

While Michael J. Fox was once best known for his Back to the Future films, he is
now widely known as an advocate for Parkinson’s Disease, a condition he was
diagnosed with in 1991. The father-of-four often speaks out on the importance of family.

“Always be available to your kids,” Michael advised. “Because if you say, ‘Give
me five minutes, give me ten minutes,’ it’ll be 15, it’ll be 20. And then when you
get there, the shine will have worn off whatever it is they wanted to share with
you. I’ve never gotten up to see something one of my kids wanted to show me
and not been rewarded.”

Ewan McGregor

Trainspotting star and father-of-four Ewan McGregor shared some advice about living in the moment with your children, and being fully present with them.

“Pay attention: I recognize it can be boring to play with young children – to tell a
story over and over again, let’s say – but the secret is being there,” Ewan said. “If you’ve made a decision to play with your children, then play with them. Don’t be looking through papers on your desk or sneaking off to the computer. Turn off your BlackBerry. Lose yourself in their world. Even if you do it for a short time, it will mean a lot to you and to them.”


Celebrity Baby Scoop is one of the most popular blogs on the topic and the
foremost provider of everything celebrity-baby, featuring baby fashion, baby
names, baby trends and up-to-the-minute celebrity baby gossip and pics. Get all the latest news, updates, and photos about Hollywood’s most beloved celebrity moms, dads and their babies.

Bad Habits To Break Before Bed

Most of us are lucky if we get a few solid hours of sleep a night. Why all the tossing and turning though? Your nightly habits may be what’s causing it. Allure suggests breaking these bad habits so you can get a good night’s rest!

Television

Watching television before you go to bed causes your body to think its not time for bed yet!

Lights

Lights off! Any amount of light can disturb melatonin levels, which help you sleep! Shut the lights and turn those digital clocks away from you!

Clocks

Speaking of digital clocks, avoid them while trying to sleep. By looking at the clock before bed and when you wake up in the middle of the night, you will just become anxious. Turn the digital clock away from you-the lack of light also helps!

Caffeine

Whether it’s coffee, tea or soda, caffeine stays in your system a lot longer than you may think. Try avoiding caffeine eight hours before bed-yes that’s right, EIGHT!

Tight Pajamas

Skip the super tight pj’s and try slinky (which can also be sexy!). Tight pajamas interferes with circadian rhythms causing your melatonin levels to decrease and body temperature to increase! This will cause a bad nights sleep!

Image: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

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Celeb Mommy Fashion

Ever wonder how celeb mommies always look great when spotted out and about with their kids? Well you can too! Just follow these simple fashion tips from parenting.com!

Oversized Sunglasses-perfect for hiding tired eyes!

Easy Up Dos-try a sleek ponytail or messy bun if your in a hurry. They can look just as chic as blow drying your hair (which can take forever!).

Fashionable Hats– do you have a serious case of bedhead? Throw on fedora, knit beret, floppy hat- anything you like! It’s fashionable and hides that unkempt hair!

The Mom Bag– the mom bag is the most important accessory for any mom on the go! All because it’s a mom bag doesn’t mean it has to be ugly. Get an oversized, hobo bag that can fit all your essentials. Fringe is super cute right now!

Images: 1, 2, 3, 4

For up-to-date info on sales and other Totsy fun: follow us on Twitter (@totsyfan), Like us on Facebook (facebook.com/totsyfan), repin our boards on Pinterest (pinterest.com/totsyfan).

Earth Week Sweepstake Results!

The results are in from Totsy’s Earth Week Sweepstakes! On April 20th, we asked our readers:

“What little things do you do with your little ones, to make the world a greener place?”

We were touched by the thoughtful (and creative!) responses, ranging from unique twists on up cycling, to family-style park cleanups and classroom education. Environmental protection is one of the great challenges we face, and it’s clear that Totsy moms are rising to that challenge by creating change where is matters most- at home. The first 3 responses will receive a prize pack from our wonderful friends at iPlay, Bumkins Organics, Wear Your Intention & Full Circle. Totsy is also donating $100 to Texas Discovery Gardens, our grand prize winner’s favorite environmental non-profit organization. Thank you to everyone who submitted, we share your passion in creating a better world for the wee ones we love most.

Top 5 Answers:

1. We give our plastic bags to someone who uses them to crochet sleeping mats for homeless people, and we recycle our other plastic and cans.- Diana

2. My husband, my children and I go for a walk every other evening after dinner, and always each take a bag to collect trash that we see along our walk. We’ve turned it into a game, who ever picks up the most trash gets a special treat when we get home. -Veronica

3. We love to compost! When we eat our meals all our food scraps get put into our compost bucket which we use for our garden! – Jaime

4. I teach my daughter that almost everything can be recycled into something else. We use plastic bottles for planters; and egg cartons for paint trays. We also like to take a few minutes when we visit parks to pay it forward to mother earth and pick up some trash that has blown around. Every day is a new lesson in being friendly to our environment. – Amber

5. I plant native flowers in my yard as well as add things that will attract butterflies, bird, and bees. I like to keep my yard very nature-friendly. – Jacky

Image: 1, 2

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