Sometimes jobs really stink, but this particular task of mine stunk in all the best ways.  I was contacted by Tracie Groff, a Malta gal and independent Scentsy Consultant to see if I'd be interested in doing a review and giveaway of some Scentsy products.  I gladly obliged!  After tweeting "smell you later" to Tracie, she thankfully put my poor-taste humor aside and came over with some products. 

Tracie left me a Scentsy Basket Party, which is a bag filled with more aroma's than one nose could possibly handle!  You could be sniffing for days, and I was.  Contained in the 'Basket Party' bag was other goodies to try out;  A travel scent tin, hand sanitizer, room spray, a plug-in Scentsy Warmer and I'm probably missing something. 

Scentsy in my kitchen
My Scentsy warmer in my kitchen
To be honest, I was a little skeptical of Scentsy before I tried it.  I'm not a scented candle lover, and I am very particular about what scents I like.  After a few days with Scentsy though, I was really impressed! 
- Scentsy Warmes use a low-watt bulb to slowly melt the wax
- No flame, no smoke and no wicks
- Over 80 different scents to choose from
- Scents linger pleasantly in the house, but are not overwhelming

I was so impressed the with Scentsy warmer that I was "sampling" (pic above) that I ended up buying it, and a couple more scent bars to go with it. 

Scentsy Buddy
Lenny the lamb surrounded by Scentsy
Another very unique item Scentsy makes is called  Scentsy Buddy.  Each Scentsy Buddy comes with a a Scent Pak and makes the buddy smell SO good!  Though it says for ages 3 and up, Angie loves our 'Lenny the Lamb' and I think she feels at home whenever she smells him.  Lenny is soft and cuddly and a really excellent quality stuffed toy.  You can switch out your scent pak anytime, but they will last smelling good for several months. There are several other buddies to choose from too, including a frog, lion, elephant, pig, monkey and more! 
Want to win this adorable Scentsy Buddy -  Sasha the Bear?
By the way, 100% of the proceeds of this bear go to the Ronald McDonald House Charities

Here's how to enter (4 chances to win):

1 Entry - Visit Tracie's Scentsy Site and comment here about what product you'd most like to try

1 Entry - 'Like' Tracie, MaltaMama & SaratogaMama on Facebook and leave a separate comment here that you do

2 Bonus Entries - Host a 'Basket Party' with Tracie for two additional entries! 
(see details below)

Enter until Monday, October 10th 10pmEST - Good luck!

Basket Party
What is a Basket Party?
The idea behind the 'Basket Party' concept is that if you were interested in hosting a Scentsy party, you could either have Tracie come to your home, or you could bring the party to them!  Carry your own Scentsy display basket for 10-14 days and share it with as many people you want.  Take orders, get rewards, smell good! 

Email Tracie to book yours today!

Keller Williams Concert Tickets!
Enter here to win!
This week flew by for me!  It's Friday already and there are a lot of things going on this weekend for the family. 

First and foremost, you have until noon today to enter the Pure Bliss Photography Giveaway! 

Secondly, if you want to catch a really awesome kids show at The Egg in October, enter the Keller Williams Concert Ticket Giveaway too!  (BTW, it's way easy to enter)

Looking for some apple-picking fun this weekend?  Check out this post about pick-your-own spots, corn mazes and more

All weekend:  It's Harvest Days at Riverview Orchards in Clifton Park from Friday to Sunday.  Free admission all weekend with pay-to-play activities.  Apple picking of course and other fun.  Friday from 6-9pm, Saturday from 10-9pm and Sunday starts early at 6pm! 

Saturday:  Greenwich is a cool little down outside of Saratoga. This Saturday is the Greenwich Fall Festival from 10am-5pm in downtown. 

Here is a list of other Saturday events

Sunday:  First Baptist Church of Ballston Spa is having a Fall Festival from 11:30-1pm.  Enjoy FREE activities, food, and a bounce castle.  FBC is located at 202 Milton Ave, in Ballston Spa. 

Enjoy the weekend!

Fashion Night Out
I'm really looking forward to attending this Fashion Night Out Saratoga!  It's being spearheaded by Eliza DeRocker, local blogger/writer/fashionista. 
Event is: Saturday, October 13th from 6-10pm at Duo on South Broadway.  Tickets are $25 with dinner or $10 without.  Expect free makeovers, live music, fall fashion, shopping, and socializing!  A great Mama Night Out.  Let's hope I can come up with something to wear that's not dorky!  Email to RSVP by this Friday!  See you there. 

Other events around town:
This Thursday from 9-10am is Birding Walk at Saratoga Spa State ParkI've been to some nature programs there and really enjoyed them.  You  have to call to register, 584-2000 Ext. 221.

Library Story Times:
Ballston Spa's are Thursday mornings from 10-10:45 for ages 3-5
Friday mornings from 10-10:45 for ages 18mos-3yrs 
Drop in anytime- No registration is needed!

Malta Branch (In the Malta Community Center)
Tuesday Preschool Story Time from 2-3pm
Thursday Toddler Story Time from 10:45-11:15
Friday Preschool Story Time from 10:45-11:30
Call to register: 518-682-2495

Don't forget about the Pure Bliss Photography Giveaway!

Keller Williams Ticket Giveaway
Click the pic to enter to win a pair of tickets to the upcoming Keller Williams Kids Show at the Egg in Albany!  It's going to be great fun! 
You probably all know by now that I've launched SaratogaMama.   Many of you are asking me what's happening with MaltaMama and I wanted to answer some of those questions. 
For now, MaltaMama will remain as-is.  I will try my best to blog M-F as I always have.  I still have giveaways coming up and lots of wonderful sponsors and friends. 

If you're looking for event information, head over to SaratogaMama.  I'm keeping that Event Calendar full with all kinds of interesting things.  Sort by category or date and plan your adventure! 

Also, the SM-Blog is a great source of information too!  Posts are categorized so you can easily find information.  I'm adding new content all the time so check back often.  I'm also moving some MaltaMama content over to the SM-Blog so it's easier for you all to search and find.  

The SM Facebook page and Twitter are excellent ways of keeping in touch too :-) 
And don't forget about the SaratogaMama Swap page on Facebook for posting, trading, selling, or swapping your baby/kid/maternity gear! 

As you probably imagine, maintaining two websites is a lot of work.  SaratogaMama isn't just for Saratoga mama's though!  It encompass Saratoga County, including of course, Malta.  Malta is my home and I'm very loyal to this area.  I hope you will join me on my newest adventure and start adding SaratogaMama to your list of go-to websites.   

I'd like you all to meet Clifton Park's newest childcare option: Learning to Know Educational Center
Learning to Know is a brand new, licensed facility located next to Tiny Tots Tearoom in Clifton Park.  In addition to offering full daycare services for ages 2 and up, the center focuses on fostering a love of learning in each student. 

Students learn to follow their curiosity, to think creatively, and to work both independently and cooperatively with others.

Learning to Know
Learning to Know provides full daycare to children ages 2-6 years old in a personal small center atmosphere. 
  • Full Time and Part Time offered
  • Competitive Rates
  • Pre-K Curriculum for 2-3 y/olds
  • Kindergarten Wrap Program
  • Shenendehowa School District
Currently enrolling!  Call today for a tour or for more information:  518-371-3722
Learning To Know Educational Center
1536 Crescent Road • Plaza 8 • Clifton Park, NY 12065 •

I recently had the pleasure of meeting and working with Kelly Faulkner of Pure Bliss Photography.  Kelly is a mama of one adorable little girl and recently moved to this area from the southern tier area of NY.   We are truly lucky to have her talents here! 

My family and I chose to do a session in Yaddo Gardens in Saratoga.  The night was hot, humid, muggy, and buggy but we pressed on. Throughout our session, Kelly was super professional, patient and up-for-anything.  We tried several poses in various locations and configurations.  She was easily able to wrangle an impatient 3 year-old and a confused 1 year-old and get them both to perform.    

Love this shot of Angie & Robby
Once our session was complete, Kelly posted a few preview pictures on Facebook.  A week or so later, she had our online gallery ready for viewing.  There were so many beautiful pictures to choose from!  She captured stunning individual shots of each child, gorgeous shots of both kids, pictures that made us laugh, and many wonderful family pictures.    
The result is a gorgeously packaged Pure Bliss keepsake CD containing 25 of our most favorite pictures we will cherish forever. 

On to the best part.... Giveaway!

Pure Bliss Photography is giving away a FREE Photo Session to one lucky MaltaMama Winner!

Package includes a 1 hour photo session at location of your choice (within 30 miles of Saratoga).  Can be family portraits, newborn, engagement, pets, etc - limited to 5 people maximum.   Package also includes an online gallery of your images to share with friends & family & 25 high resolution files on disc and a custom CD case to store and display.   Printing rights are also included. 

Here's how to enter:
3 chances to enter!

1 Entry:   Visit Pure Bliss Photography's website and comment here about anything you like about the site

1 Entry:  Like all three:  Pure Bliss Photography, MaltaMama & SaratogaMama on Facebook and comment here that you do

1 Entry:  Comment here with your favorite LOCAL location for photos and why

You have until noon on Friday, September 30th to enter! 
Good luck!!
To Love A Child
As you probably know by know, I'm on the board of the local non-profit org To Love A Child.  I am honored and humbled to be on this board made up of amazing individuals.  We provide humanitarian assistance to underprivileged families in Haiti, Zimbabwe and here in the US.  We recently donated supplies and money to local victims of hurricane Irene and we continue to help areas of need where ever we can. 

Next Tuesday night, September 27th is To Love A Child's annual dinner "Celebrating Children".  I will be there and am looking forward to it.  I'd like to invite you to attend with me!  Here are the details:

Tuesday, September 27th at 6:00pm
"Celebrating Children" TLC Annual Awards Dinner and Celebration!
The Century House in Latham
Tickets: $75 per person
Expect tons of great food, live entertainment, fabulous silent auction items and a chance to get to know more about To Love A Child. 
Mistress of Ceremonies will be Jessica Layton from WNYT Channel 13.  For tickets, please contact Cindy Schmehl at 518-859-4424.  Tickets will be available at The Century House the night of the event.

Please consider going to this event and supporting a wonderful local organization doing big things! 

As you probably know, I'm a supporter of the Ballston Area Community Center.  They offer a fantastic 'open gym' program for toddlers during the fall and winter months, a teen program, summer programs, before and after school programs, to name a few.  We've spent many mornings there at Open Gym and the kids love it there.  Also, the staff there is friendly and accommodating and seem to genuinely enjoy being there. 

I was really excited to be contacted by Kathi Leigh who is the Executive Director of BACC.  She informed me that they have morning and afternoon openings in their Universal Pre-Kindergarten program!  The morning session is 9:00 am-11:30 am and the afternoon session is 12:30 pm-3:00pm five days a week. The program follows the school district schedule.

Universal Pre-Kindergarten is funded by New York State and administered by the BSCSD and will provide four year old children access to quality programming and there is no charge.  Yes, that's right, FREE preschool! 

All children who reside in the Ballston Spa Central School District who are four years of age on or before December 1st, are eligible.

Please contact Kathi Leigh at 885-3261 or by email:  If you don't need preschool, please pass this information on to someone who may.  A great program at a really great price!

The chilly weather over the weekend was more bearable by the thought of apple-picking and fall fun!  We have lots of options in our area for picking.  We've been to Bowman's, Saratoga Apple, Schuyler Farms and Sunnyside Gardens and I don't think you can go wrong with any of those choices.  Check out the options and 'pick' away!  

Bowman Orchards:  Pick your own and picked apples, raspberries, blackberries, pumpkins (seasonally) cider, donuts and farm animals too! 
141 Sugar Hill Road, Rexford NY, 12148.

Ellms Family Farm Pumpkin patch, hay rides, corn maze and more! 
 448 Charlton Road · Ballston Spa, NY · 12020

Riverview Orchard: Apples, bakery, donuts, hayrides are free on weekends. 
660 Riverview Road, Rexford, NY 12148-1433

Saratoga Apple:  Apples, cider, fresh baked goods, and produce.  Also an assortment of local, natural, and healthy food and gifts.  Apple cider donuts are made daily all year round.
1174 Route-29, Schuylerville, NY 12871           

Schuyler Farms: Corn maze, hay rides, pumpkin patch, other fall fun!
1124 New York 29, Schuylerville, NY 12871-1902
518-695-5308 ‎

Sunnyside Gardens:  Corn maze, hay rides, pumpkin patch, train ride, cider donuts and more.
345A Church Street, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866