7 Gifts For New Parents That Are Ridiculously Useful

Posted by Katie S on Jan 15, 2020 10:56:55 AM

Ridiculously Useful Gifts For New Parents

There is little in this world more intimidating than becoming a new parent. And frankly, there’s only so much one can do to truly prepare emotionally for the sleep deprivation, endless diapers, and overwhelming feelings of love to come. Fortunately, there are a few useful items out there that do make the logistics of it all a bit easier. So, whether you’re looking to get equipped for your own baby’s arrival, or you’re shopping for a traditional baby shower gift (or for a manshower gift - yes, it’s a thing now), check out our suggestions for innovative Nite Ize-inspired presents for parents.

 

1. Pimp Their Ride

Nite Ize Your Stroller

No, I don’t mean the minivan. Every new parent’s saving grace is their stroller. Screaming baby? Time for a stroll. Need adult interaction? Time to stroll with a friend. Day or night, movement is the key to baby sleep, and sleep is key for parent survival. So, stroll. You can have the coolest whip in town with Nite Ize accessories. The HandleBand or Steelie Bar Mount keeps phones securely in place right on the handlebar. Oh you think I mean for texting and calls? No, no – that’s for the white noise app that will be soothing the baby to sleep along the way, and inevitably for then taking photos of the sleeping baby. Throw in a Radiant 125 Rechargeable Bike Light that attaches to a stroller handle or side bar to light the way on those late night walks. And lastly, throw in one of our super-sized S-Biners  – the easiest way to clip shopping bags, hats, water bottles and just about anything for quick access on the stroller.

 

2. Brighten Their Late "Nite" Activities

Radiant 100 Mini Lantern

Most parents share their bedroom with baby for at least the first few weeks for convenience of feeding, changing, rocking, shushing, and all those newfound middle-of-the-night hobbies. A nifty fact for new parents is that red light won’t disrupt you or baby’s night vision, and it’s less likely to wake up a sleeping partner. The cute, squishy Radiant 100 Lantern with both red and white light settings is a great option, or you can opt for a headlamp that also has red and white LED settings.

 

3. Make Diaper Clean-Up A Little Cleaner

Pack-A-Poo

Changing babies at places that aren’t really optimized for it can be awkward. When you’re somewhere that doesn’t have a diaper pail or easily-accessed outdoor trash can (e.g. an airplane, restaurant, or friend’s fancy house), it’s great to have poo-bags on hand to contain the smell before tossing the diaper. They're not just for dogs! The Pack-A-Poo clips easily to a diaper pad and is equipped with biodegradable bags. It also has a rotating core, so when baby inevitably grabs ahold of the bags and pulls them out, it’s easy to reel them right back in.

 

4. Kick the Baby Monitor up a Notch

Steelie Pedestal Mount

Steelie is great for attaching your phone to stroller handles, but isn’t exclusive to phones. You can use the Steelie Pedestal on your baby monitor or on the camera to help you get better angles.

 

5. Secure Everything

Secure everything with Gear Ties and S-Biners

With Gear Ties and S-Biners you can give all those oh-so-important toys and bottles easy attachment points to grab them quickly and not worry about losing them on the go.

 

6. Contain The Mess

RunOff Medium Packing Cube

Let's face it. Baby clothes (and parents' clothes for that matter) get dirty – often multiple times per day. When spit-ups or blowouts strike when you're out of the house, toss the soiled article in a RunOff Medium Packing Cube. The RunOff line of waterproof bags are best known for keeping water out, but they also do a great job of sealing messes in!

 

7. Just Hitch It

Hitch Phone Anchor + Tether

With the Hitch Phone Anchor + Tether, your phone stays attached to you. You can also clip the Hitch like a handle to hang a phone from your wrist when your hands are full. Later, it’s a great way to protect phones when toddlers reach that “grab-and-throw-things” phase.

Phone Hitch + Tether in action

New parents have always relied on advice from those who have gone before. Please help our community by sharing tips and tricks you’ve learned and your favorite Nite Ize parenting-hacks in the comments section below.

Topics: Mobile Device Accessories, Home, LED Products, runoff, Steelie

Holiday Decorating Made Brighter And Easier With Nite Ize

Posted by Katie S on Nov 26, 2019 9:48:19 AM

Holiday Decorating Made Brighter and Easier

It’s the hap, hap, happiest time of year! Let the holiday decorating, caroling, cocktail parties, and family gatherings begin. As everyone knows, with all the fun also comes stress. So, we’ve put together a few of our favorite Nite Ize tips and tricks to make sure you sail smoothly through this holiday season.

 

Perfect Light Placement Every Time

Gear Tie Foam Reusable Twist Tie

Sometimes getting those lights and garlands hung just perfectly can be an art. Make it simple with Gear Ties or cut-to-length Gear Tie Foam Twist Ties to attach those lights just about anywhere. Also, pro tip if you get a warm weekend in November, hang your light then! You don’t have to plug them in, but when the chilly weekends of December roll around, you’ll be glad to already have the job done.

And if you do get stuck hanging lights on a chilly day, just remember: nothing warms you up like a cold beer. With the Traveler Drink Holster, you never have to work without a beverage close at hand.

 

Dual CamJam Tie Down System
Don’t Be That Guy Who Leaves A Tree On The Highway

Twine is an imperfect solution for strapping trees to the roofs of cars. Don’t chance it with user error or failed twine that leads to a Christmas disaster on the highway. The easy to use Dual CamJam Tie Down System is easy to use and lets you achieve the right amount of tension to confidently keep your tree snugly in place for the drive home – no matter how far you have to go.

 

Trees Won’t Be The Only Thing Getting Lit

Light Up Your Punchbowl with NiteGems

Light up your holiday punch bowl with the floating, waterproof NiteGems. They can be set to a variety of colors so you can reuse them throughout the year for all your other holidays too or when you just want to add a bright pop to your beverage. If you want to get really fancy, make your own garnished ice cubes to float alongside your NiteGems, like these cranberry-and-rosemary ones:

Light Up Your Beverage with a NiteGem

And don’t forget about your beer and other-beverage drinkers – keep some SlapLit LED Drink Wraps around to keep hands warm and spirits bright all night long.

SlapLit LED Drink Wrap

 

Fill The Stockings, Then Light Those Up Too

Add SpotLit LED Carabiners to the stockings to color-code them or for a fun pop of color. You could even color code everyone’s gifts with their stocking light color as a creative theme.

SpotLit Carabiner Light

 

Save Your Future Self A Headache

When it’s time to clean up after the holidays, take a minute to wrap and organize your lights with Gear Ties – it’s worth an extra minute so you’re not sorting through a mangled mess of lights next year.

Organizing with Gear Ties

Share your holiday tips and favorite uses for Nite Ize products in the comments section below.

Topics: Gear Ties, Home, LED Products, Holidays, decorating

National Preparedness Month: How To Build A Home Emergency Kit

Posted by Katie S on Sep 25, 2019 1:45:03 PM

How to Build A Home Emergency Kit

Regardless of location, everyone should have at least a basic home emergency kit. Power outages are the most likely reason you may need back-up supplies, but your kit should be customized for the types of disasters most common in your area. With major disasters, public alerts or emergency personnel will tell you whether to evacuate or shelter in place – always heed these warnings, they truly are in your best interest.

My kit is built for four people for 72 hours, and it’s kept in our basement near the camping equipment which can be used to supplement it. When disasters occur, emergency services are overwhelmed with calls. The best way you can help them is by not becoming another emergency. Have the supplies needed for you and your family to get by for at least three days.

1. Water

I like this style of water pouch as it is packaged for a long shelf life and makes it easy to determine and regulate how much each person should get – two 4.4 oz packs a day. then I have the 25 gallon Aqua-tainer filled for washing and cooking. If you have a heads up that you’re likely in for a power outage, it’s a good idea to also fill up a bathtub with water. Then you have additional water to flush toilets and use for hand washing.

2. Food

Canned goods for emergencies

Ideally you have a stocked pantry when the power goes out, but it doesn’t always work out that way. For emergencies lasting longer than our pantry’s contents, I keep canisters of Mountain House freeze dried meals and a camping stove + plate and utensil sets in our kit. Mountain House has assortment packs for specific numbers of people for 72+ hours, but since we have food allergies in our group, I just picked a few individual ones that work for our needs and don’t sound like they will taste too bad with just boiling water added.

3. Crank Radio/Charger

I like this one from Eton, it’s the same one I keep in my Car Emergency Kit and it can be charged via the solar panel or the hand crank. The radio will keep you informed on the status of the disaster in your area, and it can also be used to charge your phone and flashlights.

4. Lantern, Flashlight, Headlamp + Batteries

Radiant 400 Lantern

Nothing makes a power outage feel scarier than just sitting in the dark. Keep your lights and lanterns charged or with spare batteries nearby and keep at least one of them in a spot that you can easily find in the dark. I have the Radiant 400 Lantern which will run for almost 800 hours in low mode (and no, that’s not a typo!). I have the Radiant 300 Rechargeable Headlamp for hands-free use for whoever is cooking (or dealing cards), and then two 3-in-1 Flashlights so the kids can have their own and feel more empowered as well.

5. Warm Sleeping Gear

How to build a home emergency kit

We have our camping sleeping bags in the basement, but I have added SOL Escape Bivvies to our kit. They can be used on their own or layered with your sleeping bag to increase its warmth rating.

6. First Aid Kit & Manual

Hopefully you won’t need this but if you’re injured during a disaster situation, emergency response teams can be delayed or unable to reach you, and you’ll be glad to have a comprehensive kit with instructions on hand.

7. Hygiene Items

Bath Wipes make a great addition to your kit so you don’t have to use much or any of your water stores for basic self-cleaning. Also handy – a 5-gallon bucket with a toilet seat, lid, and TP. Ideally you’re not stuck in your basement, but if you might be and if you don’t have a bathroom down there, you’re going to need a bathroom solution – enter, the bathroom bucket.

8. Entertainment

How to build a home emergency kit

A deck of cards or a travel game set can do wonders to keep everyone calm and distracted.

9. The Extras

A knife or knife multitool for utility, duct tape to seal windows and fix anything that breaks, and a GearLine and extra Gear Ties to keep you organized in an unfamiliar situation.

10. A Sturdy, Well-Labeled Container 

How to build a home emergency kit

I have our kit in a large wheeled bin with a handle. Most importantly, I have bright yellow labels on it and have communicated to our family members where it is, just in case I’m not home if it is needed.

 

I hope you found this information useful and that you will move “building my kit” to the top of your to-do list. If you have suggestions for items to add to this list, please note them in the comment section below.

Topics: Emergency Preparedness, Home

National Preparedness Month: How To Build An Emergency Go Bag

Posted by Katie S on Sep 11, 2019 1:53:48 PM

Building Your Emergency Go Bag

A Go-Bag (also commonly referred to as a Bug-Out Bag) is a pre-packed bag that will be your lifeline in case of an emergency evacuation situation.  Unfortunately, I found out the hard way exactly why a Go-Bag is an essential item to have packed and ready in your home. It was the middle of December about ten years ago when I found myself standing outside our Bay Area apartment building with 60 other families watching flames chew through the wooden siding and smoke billowing in every direction. With all of our cars trapped in the building’s basement garage below, we had nothing to do but watch. I was wearing hot pink fleece pajama pants, rain boots with no socks, and a too-light jacket for the unseasonable cold winter we were having. Heat from the flames notwithstanding, it was a chilling moment in every sense of the word. Somehow, despite living in earthquake country and working for a company that specialized in medical and survival gear at the time, I had just never gotten around to building a Go-Bag – it was somewhere near the bottom of my to-do list. You can bet, it immediately moved to the top.

So, here are my recommendations for your Emergency Go-Bag. Mine is built for four people (two adults and two kids) for 24 hours. Given the type of disasters that are most likely to occur where we live (grass fires or floods), we should be able to reach a friend’s home or red cross shelter in 24 hours on foot. If you live in earthquake or hurricane territories, I recommend having enough supplies for all family members for 72 hours as those disasters can take out a much larger area of infrastructure at once. A coat closet near the front door or other place that you would pass on your fastest way out of the house is the ideal spot to keep your bag.

Without further ado, here is the list:

1. Water

I like this style of water pouch as it is packaged for a long shelf life and makes it easy to determine and regulate how much each person should get – two 4.4 oz packs a day. I have water carry bags as well as water purification tablets in case we need more than the pouches I’ve packed.

2. Food

RunOff Waterproof Pocket snack bag

If you are only packing a 24-hour kit, food is not technically essential, however eating can help you stay warm and keep you mentally and emotionally stronger. Plus, if you have kids, you know that snacks actually are essential for everyone’s sanity. I like the classics like energy bars and dried fruit, they have to be replaced more regularly than emergency ration bricks, but they are significantly more palatable.

3. Emergency Radio and Charger

I like this little one that Eton makes for the American Red Cross because it doesn’t take up much space in your pack and it has radio functionality plus you can charge your phone or rechargeable headlamp from it, just make sure you have the correct charging cords packed.

4. Lights

Nite Ize Headlamps

At the very least, pack a rechargeable headlamp like the Radiant 300 which can be recharged as you go using the Emergency Radio from item #3 above. I also have the Radiant 2-in-1 Lantern which pulls double duty as a flashlight and lantern, and the 3-in-1 Mini Flashlight so the kids can feel in control with their own light as well.

5. First Aid

First aid kit

I keep the UltraLight Watertight .9 Kit in my bag because it doesn’t add much weight, but it’s packed with high quality, well thought out medical tools, and has enough room for me to throw in a couple items to customize it for our family. I also keep N95 respirator masks in my kit. In the case of major fires or earthquakes, air quality often deteriorates to harmful levels. If your biggest concern is the next Superbug, these can also help you rest easier.

6. Survival Essentials

Again, weight is a consideration so items that are multifunctional in small packages are key. You have to be able to carry all of this on your back. I keep the Pocket Survival Pak Plus which kills a lot of birds with one stone. It has fire starting tools, a whistle and signal mirror, knife, water-purification tablets, duct tape (for gear repair, clothes repair, really anything repair), and much more.    

7. Emergency Blankets + Bivvies 

I have two emergency blankets and two emergency bivvies so everyone can wrap up warmly if we are sleeping out for a night.

8. Emergency Shelter

Prep2-shelter

I recommend a lightweight, heat reflective tarp that can act as an extra blanket or as a shelter. Make sure to get one with grommets (like this) and pack nylon cording so you can easily rig it up.

9. Extra Layers

RunOff Waterproof Bags

Your emergency blankets can be wrapped to keep everyone warm on the go, but I recommend packing up an extra set of clothes for everyone. I use a Large RunOff Waterproof bag that acts as a compression sack and keeps all of our extra layers dry in the pack.

10. Cash

Emergency cash

There’s no guarantee that you’ll have the ability or wherewithal to grab your wallet on the way out the door, keep cash in your go bag so you can purchase essentials or pay for a night in a hotel/motel if you can.

11. Emotional Support Items

Emotional support items

When thinking about survival, your mind probably goes to the food, water, shelter basics, but the truth is your mental state is equally important. Something as simple as a deck of cards can be a great way to calm your mind and bring levity if you’re holed up in a red cross shelter for the night. Disasters can be particularly difficult on children as they have a harder time processing the rapid change and understanding why this is happening. Our kids are still little and they each have cherished “loveys”. We have extras of these for traveling, laundry time, etc, but we also have an extra for each of them packed away in our go-bag along with one of their favorite books. I have no doubt that these items would bring immense comfort to them in an emergency.

12. Hygiene Items  

Bath wipes, a roll of TP, and dog poop bags…not just for the dog. Let’s just leave it at that, and you’ll be covered until you can get settled into a shelter or friend’s home.

13. Rain Protection

In a worse-case scenario, everything you own is now being carried on your back. Don’t let it get soaked in a rainstorm to boot. Throw in ponchos and make sure at least one is big enough to cover you and the pack. I also keep certain items in waterproof RunOff bags inside the pack for extra protection like my cash, batteries, food and clothes.

14. A Sturdy Pack…or Two 

Prep2-backpack

Once you have all your items laid out, you’ll have a better idea of the pack size you’ll need. Ideally you have an old one in the basement that would love to be given a new life as your Go-Bag. Because ours is packed for four people and pretty heavy, I keep a second smaller bag rolled up and clipped to the side of the pack. This way, assuming my husband and I are together, we can get clear of the emergency and then split up gear into the two packs or cut leg holes in the smaller pack to use as a kid carrier. I also have a bunch of S-Biners, Carabiners, and Gear Ties clipped and strapped to the pack so if we have time to grab extra items, I can quickly clip or strap them to the bag on the way out the door.

If you have suggestions of what to pack in a Go-Bag based on your experiences, please leave them in the comment suggestion below.

Topics: Emergency Preparedness, LED Flashlights, Home

The Future is Rechargeable: 8 Exciting New LED Products from 2019

Posted by Cassie Ryan on Aug 23, 2019 2:42:20 PM

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), each year Americans throw away more than three billion batteries. That’s billion—with a ‘B’. As proud supporters of organizations such as American Rivers and The Conservation Alliance, we at Nite Ize recognize the importance of responsibility in respect to our natural world. That’s why we’re converting many of our lighting and nighttime visibility products to micro-USB rechargeable power. This year alone, we introduced eight exciting LED products that offer the convenience of rechargeability while reducing battery waste. We call that a win/win!

 

1. Radiant 314 Rechargeable Lantern

Radiant 314 Rechargeable Lantern

This compact but mighty rechargeable lantern features bright white light as high as 314 lumens and low as 16, plus an amber mode that casts a gentle, night-vision saving illumination. It also features a built-in power bank that you can use to charge your devices from anywhere! Durable, drop-proof (up to 1 meter), and water resistant, this lantern is the perfect companion for outdoor adventures, backyard barbeques, and emergency home use.

 

2. Radiant Rechargeable Micro Lantern

Radiant Rechargeable Micro Lantern

The little brother in the family of Radiant Lanterns is the Rechargeable Micro Lantern. This small, clippable swivel light is perfect for everything from lighting a tent to bedside reading. The Micro Lantern features Disc-O Select technology, so you can choose between four different colors (red, green, blue and white), or keep it in fun, color-changing Disc-O mode. This pocket-sized light is water resistant and runs for up to 10 hours on a single charge.

 

3. Radiant 300 Headlamp

Radiant 300 Rechargeable Headlamp

Our rechargeable Radiant headlamp also got an upgrade in 2019. The Radiant 300 now offers 300 lumens of bright white light and features five modes plus lockout to prevent it from accidentally turning on and draining the battery during transportation. It is micro USB rechargeable and lasts between 4 and 36 hours (depending on light setting) on a single charge.

 

4. TagLit Rechargeable Magnetic LED Marker

Taglit Rechargeable Magnetic Marker

Being seen while you’re out at night is crucial to your safety, which is why we offer a wide variety of LED products to keep you visible in the evening and early morning hours. Our popular TagLit is now available in rechargeable form, and brighter than before. This little marker features a magnetic closure so you can easily attach it to clothing, hats, bags and more. Set it to steady glow or flash mode and you’re ready for evening runs, rides or walks with your dog.

 

5. SlapLit Rechargeable LED Slap Wrap

SlapLit Rechargeable LED Slap Wrap

Another one of our popular visibility products, the SlapLit LED Slap Wrap, also got a rechargeable upgrade this year. Slap it on your wrist, arm, or ankle and the bright 360˚ illumination will keep you visible during nighttime fitness and fun.

 

6. SpokeLit Rechargeable Wheel Light

SpokeLit Rechargeable Wheel Light

Side visibility while biking is paramount for safety, but too often ignored. Our iconic SpokeLit bike lights are now available in rechargeable Disc-O Select! The SpokeLit offers easy, tool-free installation, fits most bicycle wheels, is weather resistant, and runs for 6 hours per charge.

 

7. SpotLit XL Rechargeable Carabiner & Collar Light

SpotLit XL Rechargeable Collar Light

One of our most popular products (that you may already own) is the SpotLit carabiner light. Often clipped on dog collars, key chains, or bags, this little light is versatile, compact and convenient. The new SpotLit XL is not just larger, but bigger, brighter and, of course, rechargeable! As a Disc-O Select product, it features color-changing mode plus four selectable colors. This light is also great for households with multiple dogs – give each of them their own color and be able to tell who’s who in a pitch-black backyard on a moonless night.

 

8. INOVA T8R PowerSwitch Rechargeable Flashlight

INOVA T8R PowerSwitch Rechargeable Flashlight

If you're in the market for a high-performance flashlight that is as versatile as it is convenient, look no further than the new T8R in our INOVA line. This tactical-grade rechargeable flashlight packs 762 lumens and offers both bright white and red beams to preserve night vision. If you're in an environment where you don't have access to a charger, the T8R also works with two CR123 batteries.

 

Although we know we can’t solve the world’s problems with a little rechargeability, we certainly recognize the benefits of rechargeable products. If we can help put a dent in the 180,000 tons of batteries that end up in landfills each year, we’re going to make it happen.

Topics: Visibility and Safety, New Products, LED Pet Products, LED Dog Products, Bike, Home, Fitness, Pets, LED Products

10 Beginner Tips for a Successful Vegetable Garden

Posted by Katie S on May 16, 2019 11:11:55 AM

10 Beginner Tips For a Successful Vegetable Garden

If you’ve never grown a vegetable garden before or if you’ve only dabbled with the occasional potted veggie plants, fully committing can be an intimidating prospect. So, let me put your mind at ease. Everything will be OK. If you plan a little and set aside a bit of time for regular maintenance, you will succeed in your garden. You’ll probably hit a few speed bumps the first year, but you’ll learn a lot, and you will have the satisfaction of eating your own vegetables.

The three essential factors for a successful vegetable garden are sun, water, and protection, but here are a few other helpful tips for getting started:

1. Like all good things, it starts with a healthy foundation. 

Nutrient-rich soil is key for growing healthy vegetables. If you’re filling empty raised beds, it’s worth buying good planting soil from your local garden shop so you have a weed-free starting point. (Plus, it’s great to make friends and support your local shop – they will have expert tips for growing in your area.) If you are turning an existing bed into a vegetable garden, you may want to work-in a bag or two of soil conditioner. Or, to save money a great way to renew nutrients is by burying your leaves. In the fall, mow over your fallen leaves, then bury them 6-8” down in your bed, or layer them over the top then work them down by doing multiple passes with a tiller before the ground freezes. 

 

2. In the battle against pests, take the high ground and fortify your borders. 

Do you think bunnies are adorable fuzzy neighbors? When you see a deer in the yard do Disney-esque memories start playing in your head to a cheerful tune? Just wait till you start your vegetable garden, you may develop a new perspective on these agile, hungry nemeses. Raised beds/boxes are a great option for beginner and seasoned gardeners – fewer opportunities for weeds, natural protective border (though I still recommend chicken wire above this if you have bunnies or deer), less back pain, and control over possible soil contaminants.

 

3. Know your bugs.

When it comes to vegetables, there are good bugs, and there are bad bugs. For some of the best bugs see tip #7 – because we need BEES. For the bad bugs, enter aphids, AKA “gardeners arch nemesis #1” and slugs, or “Ugs” as my toddler calls them. Unfortunately, both these bugs are common just about everywhere in the U.S. Let’s begin with slugs. The way my mom taught me to deal with these pests is to put a small saucer or tuna can in the garden and fill it with beer. The slugs climb in and drown themselves in a drunken stupor. It might sound crazy, but I swear it works – and it doesn’t need to be the good stuff, you can use your cheap beer. Also see tip #4 for another way to deal with slugs – *hint* it’s snakes. Getting rid of aphids can be fun too. When I moved to Colorado, I learned it’s common practice to buy ladybugs and release them into your garden in late spring and they will take care of the aphids for you. You can order small buckets of these beneficial beetles online or pick them up at your local garden shop, then store them in your fridge until you’re ready to release them (try not to think too hard about a couple thousand bugs escaping in your fridge…they basically don’t move in the cold). Then just before nightfall, water your garden well and sprinkle the ladybugs throughout. With a nice damp environment and local aphids to feast on, the ladybugs will settle in and make your garden their home.

10 Beginner Tips For a Successful Vegetable Garden 

4. Embrace the slithery.

Unless snakes are truly the things your nightmares are made of, there is no downside to good ole garters in your garden. Yes, the beady eyes and slithering startle me every time, but these effective little hunters will decimate many of those problematic bugs listed above. And despite encouraging my husband to pick the little guy in this photo up to show our son, I don’t recommend picking them up in general – they emit a horrendous odor on your hands, and frankly you want them to continue living unbothered in your garden.

 10 Beginner Tips For a Successful Vegetable Garden

5. Mother knows best.

For the Middle and Northern U.S., Mother’s Day marks the time when you are generally safe from snow and frost to plant your garden.

 

6. Set yourself up for success with hardy growers.

For your first go, I highly recommend choosing vegetables that are easier to grow and maybe throw in one of the more difficult ones to play around with while you get your feet wet. These are the ones I suggest before you move on to the more finicky species: tomatoes, zucchini and squash, cucumbers, peas, and potatoes.

 

7. There’s no shame in starting with starts. 

Sure, growing plants from seed is a great feeling of accomplishment, but it also requires more advanced planning and patience than picking up healthy starts from a local shop. If patience and pre-planning aren’t your thing, or if you feel more confident in picking up starts, go for it! This is often the most popular route anyways, especially for tomatoes.

 

8. Expect big things. 

Remember that your little seedlings or starts have months more growing to do. Place your stakes and tomato cages at the same time you plant so as not to damage roots or branches later when the plants are larger. Support heavy branches with Gear Tie Reusable Foam Twist Ties and prune off over abundant growth if needed. Zucchini plants will be enormous and cucumbers and other vine vegetables will take up most of your garden space if you let them, so I recommend placing a trellis for them to grow up rather than out – this also helps keep the slugs off them.

10 Beginner Tips For a Successful Vegetable Garden 

9. Don’t forget the flowers.

A common problem in vegetable gardens is poor pollination – if your plant doesn’t have cross pollination, it won’t fruit. Bees are the answer (wind can help too). One of the best ways to attract them throughout the growing season is by having flowers near your vegetable garden to bring them round. Most flowers will attract bees, but if you want specific suggestions for the best, check out this article by the Honeybee Conservancy: “21 Flowers That Attract Bees”.

 10 Beginner Tips For a Successful Vegetable Garden

10. Herbs for the win. 

I love having a kitchen garden on our back deck where I can easily pick fresh herbs for our meals. Mine is separate from the vegetables, but there are many benefits to planting herbs in with your veggies, a practice called companion planting. For detailed info on companion planting with herbs, check out this article by the Gardening Channel: “Herbs that Pair Perfectly as Growing Partners”. Many herbs help to repel unwanted insects and even rodents, while the flowering ones tend to be great bee-attractors. You don’t want the ones you cook with to flower though (pick off they buds when they start) as it negatively affects the taste. So, if you have the space, plant twice as many as needed and let half go to seed for the bees while keeping the others pruned for eating. If you are looking forward to fresh mint for your mojitos, plant it in a pot – it’s invasive and while it smells delightful, it will take over everything if planted in the garden! And, if you’re not much of a cook, you can plant a cocktail garden instead, because of course that’s a thing now: “Grow a Cocktail Garden”.

Those are my tips for getting your vegetable garden started. I hope you’ve learned something new and are feeling excited and confident about planting. Please feel free to leave your own tips in the comments below for the community.

Topics: outdoors, DIY, Home, gardening

Nite Ize Moms Tell Us Their Nite Ize Parenting Hacks

Posted by Cassie Ryan on May 9, 2019 12:00:09 PM

Part of our mission here at Nite Ize is to make your life a little bit easier, one product at a time. This Mothers Day, we’re celebrating the superhero moms of our Nite Ize family by sharing some of their go-to products for raising and having fun with their kiddos. Every mom deserves something that makes their life just a little bit easier, and that’s where we shine.

Kelly Von Letkemann, Legal Operations Manager:

  • LED Mini Glowstick: My kids LOVE it when I turn off the lights and throw a few of these in the bathtub. They are obviously great for trick or treating or just generally clipping on kids when you are out at night (and can color code by kid).
Mini-Glowsticks
  • S-Biners: We carry water bottles around with us everywhere we go. S-Biners are the obvious choice for making sure water bottles stay attached to backpacks, and I always have one or two on hand so I can attach water bottles to my purse so I can be hands free (because we all know who gets stuck carrying all their stuff. . .)
  • FlipOut Handle + Stand: The FlipOut is great for Face Timing with family, or simply bribing your kids to eat their breakfast by offering to show them a PBS Kids show. Not that it ever happens. . .  

 

Michael Westfield, Creative Director:

  • BugLit: I wrapped one on my kid’s bed as a little light.
  • Gear Ties: These are great for closing snack bags in the pantry and large veggie bags in the fridge. Or for when I lose the bread tie or the bread tie plastic breaks.
GearTie-Food

 

Kristen Green, Customer Service Representative:

  • Flashflight LED Flying Disc: For hours of endless entertainment outside on a beautiful Colorado evening. Can’t wait to see these flying around our campsite in Moab in a few weeks!
Flashflight-Kid
  • TwistLit LED Bike Lights: My kids are the talk of the neighborhood with these.
  • BugLit: These are great for when I actually need them to do some reading! Perfect for long car rides too!

 

Calle Gainok, Digital Content Manager:

  • Steelie Pedestal Kit: I’m all about the Steelie. I use a Pedestal Kit for our video baby monitor so we can view it at just the right angle.

Baby-Monitor

 

Kristin Butcher, Marketing Communications Specialist

  • The Hitch: For when I give my butterfingered progeny my phone to take pictures (that will invariably result in 100 blurry pictures of the cat’s butt).
  • NiteHowls: Keeping an eye on your children at a campout has never been easier!
  • SpokeLit Wheel Lights: Awesomeness and safety all in one rechargeable color-changing package.

SpokeLit-Kid 

We hope this wisdom imparted by our resident moms inspires you to find new ways to make your life easier. Or steal some of their ideas, that’s what we’re here for! Tag #LifesAdventureKit on Instagram or Twitter and show off your Nite Ize parenting hacks and be entered for a chance to win your own Adventure Kit!

Topics: Visibility and Safety, Games & Toys, Gear Ties, Fun & Games, Flashflight, Bike, Home, Organization

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Over the past 30 years, Nite Ize has grown from a cabin-based startup to distributing 500+ products worldwide. We pride ourselves in being fun and functional, trusted and innovative, and obsessively dedicated to making products that are not only guaranteed for life, but guaranteed to improve your life.

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