Category Archives: Feeding

Kallista’s Needs Help Finding a Name with Cure For Her Condition

Imagine Not Being Able To Nourish Your Child With Food Or Not Knowing What Her Condition Is

What ends of the earth would you go to in order to save your child’s life?

The struggle of having a child that is sick is hard for anyone. The physical, emotional and mental demands of all the tasks that go along with the day-to-day care can be brutal.

Kallista needs help finding a cure for her medical condition plus needs access to basic life saving needs, such as food.
#prayforKallista She can only tolerate dairy and soy free Breast-Milk and insurance refuses to help.

What happens when you have the added situation of not knowing what your child’s condition is or how to help her? What about if you already lost a child that possibly has the same condition?

How does one cope with it a second time around?

Her older sister died 6 years ago from what looks like the same symptoms. 

Imagine losing your first daughter and then your second goes through the same thing and no one wants to help;( This is a short part of our story.

This is the story of Kallista and Her Family

Who is Kallista?

Kallista is a beautiful little toddler who arrived with some pretty little smiles and plenty of baby gibber to tell you about. When she isn’t running back and forth to various doctors or going through her therapy sessions she is busy trying to learn about and figure out the world around her.

What is Kallista’s typical routine on a day-to-day basis?
A day to day schedule for our family right now is pretty crazy! 
  • 6AM – Wake Up
Kallista must be accompanied at all times while on her tube so my oldest son and I have Kali duty. Which means to get her dressed and food ready. While the other person gets breakfast together, lunches made and everyone dressed and out of the door by 7AM
  • 7:30AM – We drive an hour to Phoenix for feeding therapy
  • 9AM – Feeding Therapy with myself and the 3 littlest kids. Caleb, Kallista and Blake. 
  • 10AM – Drive Back to drop Caleb off at school by 11AM
  • 11AM – 1PM – Nap-Time for Kallista. She will only nap if I am holding her. So lunch is made late or as easily as can be for Blake. I typically don’t eat. 
Some days we have feeding therapy at home or other doctors visits. 
  • 1PM – 3PM – Play-Time. Meaning I keep Kali and Blake entertained playing outside or reading. 
  • 3PM – Pick-Up kids from school
  • 3:30PM – 4PM – Wind down from school and snack time
  • 4PM – 6PM – Kallista is usually napping during this time in my arms
4PM – 5PM – Prepare dinner if Kallista is awake and willing to play with her older brother or we do something easy if she is having a bad day
  • 5PM – 6PM Dinner and clean up
 Kallista gets her medicine between 6PM – 7PM
  • 8PM – Bath time and bible reading to have kids in bed.

Prepare her milk and her nightly food to have her hooked up by 8. Bed time for Kallista is usually 8PM – 9PM depending on her day. I lay Kallista in her bed about 10 or whenever my husband gets home from work. 

Most days consist of many phone calls regarding authorizations or fighting with insurance just to get basic medical needs met. I also try to find time to share her story while she is sleeping. Says mama Jen.
How exhausted by this rigorous schedule did you feel? Let me tell you as a mom to children with various medical needs… It is physically, mentally and emotionally exhausting. It literally drains everything you have away from you. Many times you feel like this empty shell or even a real life zombie.  You literally survive off of adrenaline for the most part.
We Need Your Help To Share Kallista’s story! Get Doctors and the Insurance Company to Pay Attention! 

What Condition Is Kallista In

After several months, Kallista was diagnosed with several types of Eosinophilic Gastrointestinal Disorder.

Characterized by an abnormally higher number of eosinophils, a type of white blood cell, in different parts of the digestive track, EGID includes several conditions that can effect the digestive system in otherwise healthy infants and adults. There are four types of EGID based on where the eosinophils are found — the esophagus, stomach and small intestine, colon and blood and tissue.

Kallista has been diagnosed with all four types of EGID, mama Jen said.

The condition is often linked to a food allergen. Kallista is allergic to soy, corn, gluten and dairy so she can’t tolerate formula.

Picture Yourself Trying To Find Enough Breast-Milk To Keep Your Child Alive

[clicktotweet]Breastmilk Wanted For Baby Kallista, Her Life Depends On It. Medically She Cannot Have Anything Else.[/clicktotweet]

Mama Jen’s daughter is allergic to all food and only can feed her breast-milk. They are still looking for doctors to help find food for Kallista. She has failed every food tried including various formulas except breast-milk. If you want to donate dairy free milk please contact the milk bank we use at 817-810-0071.

Can You Help Donate Life Saving Dairy and Soy-Free Breast-Milk To Kallista

We are currently getting milk from Texas milk bank. However they frequently run low on dairy free milk. Donors would be a blessing. We have contact information for the milk bank. I used to nurse Kallista during the day. I pumped and nursed until her first birthday but decided my mental well being was more important than pumping. 

A mom and dad’s plea for your immediate help, support and attention to help Kallista and her doctors figure out what is making her sick, what is threatening her life and how they can attempt to cure her.

She is considered disabled and has state insurance. It is because of her state insurance that we are not able to see providers outside of Arizona. We are stuck here fighting with insurance to get answers and help.

A Mother’s Agony: Having to relive Allyssa’s life when Kallista was born was one of the hardest things I have ever been through. Everyday I thought she would die. Every day I was on my knees begging for God’s mercy to allow her to stay. There were so many times we ended the day with no food for the next and with God’s amazing hand he provided her milk. During her many hospital stays there are times I don’t eat because we don’t have the money.

You can help Kallista get to her appointments  and receive expensive but life saving breast-milk with a small donation here. With breast-milk costing roughly $4.00 per ounce and going through food trials, nourishing baby Kallista seems impossible. She gets at least thirty-four ounces per day, that is a hefty $136 per day!!

A Family’s Turmoil: Kallista’s life has been a whirlwind. Having little support and not enough money for my husband to be home, we have had to make really hard choices when it comes to what to do going forward. We spend $500+ a month just in gas to go to doctors appointments. My children’s lives in the beginning were staying at doctors visits and hospital stays. Not being able to be with mom and dad. Luckily my mom has helped as much as she can but besides her support we have been left to fight and support Kallista on our own. 

A Note From Dizzy Mama Marilyn to Mama Jen:

Kallista is most definitely in my prayers and I am sharing her story to reach more people. I have been through some of the things you have gone through. Trying to find answers. Trying to get doctors to spend a few more minutes with your child so they can find a solution. I too have spent countless hours on the phone with insurance companies and doctors offices just getting my boys medical needs met.

My boys don’t have what Kallista has, but I know what it is like when your child stops growing and is in failure to thrive. I know what it is like having a child that is allergic to both dairy and soy, with gluten intolerance’s. I know what it feels like when the doctor announces your child is no longer growing and that their brain has stopped growing.

With one child who was in failure to thrive from age one to age six, whose brain stopped growing at two and a half years old … I know what the whole thing is like. He couldn’t consume any types of foods and I was forced to stop breastfeeding and dry my milk up. Finding a milk that could sustain him and one that he could tolerate was tiresome. He had his first meal when he was three and a half years old, just six months after having surgery on his esophagus to correct it.

I wanted to give you a glimmer of hope. This same child is now twelve years old, has a very high IQ now, his brain began growing again when he was around five years old.

I really hope that Kallista has this same opportunity. Some more hope, his little brother stopped growing at age two and recently at the age of eight and a half shows signs of beginning to grow again. 

I am virtually holding your hand Mama Jen, helping you get through the red tape of simply feeding your child. No Child Should Ever Be Denied Food! I am sharing this heart wrenching story in an attempt to get Kallista some donor milk. Insurance should be picking up some or all of the costs involved with getting Kallista her food.

The health insurance is being completely neglectful. I want to help you find some respite relief, even if it is once a week for you to decompress a little. I am asking your local community to open up their time and to possibly volunteer cooking a few meals and ensuring that you Mama Jen have a meal to eat. I am asking local mama’s to help you with the children for example someone letting your older children carpool sometimes with them to school. Putting together some play-dates for the children too. It truly gets lonely for all the children involved and so do the parents, Mama Jen and Papa Smith, you too also need some breaks with other adults. I really hope that this message reaches all these Super Helpers so your family can get a few extra hands a month. Any local nursing Mama’s around, please help Kallista get some life saving food, donate some breast-milk if you possibly can. 

I hope we can raise our voices so loudly that we can raise more awareness for Kallista and her condition. Raise voices so she can get the full medical services she desperately needs for her survival. 

Watch for Kallista’s updates and if you can possibly help in any way, you can connect with Mama Jen through their Facebook page. If you can offer any type of support for Baby Kallista, even if just an ounce of milk, a local or even virtual support group for children with her same medical condition, a fresh hot meal for mama, sharing her story or a fun play-date I want to Thank You for helping. Please use my sharing buttons to share Baby Kallista’s story in as many places as you possibly can. 

[clicktotweet]We Are Holding Healing Hands Together To #prayforkallista[/clicktotweet]

How To Survive Thanksgiving With Babies and Toddlers

Thanksgiving With Babies and Toddlers can get pretty hectic

Are you spending Thanksgiving with a baby or toddler this year? Are you dreading what may happen at the dinner table, or how much longer it will take to prepare for the Thanksgiving festivities? How about entertaining them? 



I know I am! I am a very seasoned mama, but this year I was dreading Thanksgiving because I already have a hard time just getting everyday things done. I don’t want to imagine what it will be like trying to cook and all that. 

I know you’re thinking but mama, you literally have had babies and toddlers in your care for the last twenty years! 

You are right, I have spent plenty of years at the mercy of surviving Thanksgiving with toddlers and them. 

Why is this year different? I don’t know? Have you ever felt that? 

Yaidan is still a very high needs child. Everyday is a worry of what will he get into, what foods will he refuse, what thing will he try to climb all the “what” can get tiring. 

Thanksgiving this year will just be us, so it is like cooking dinner on a regular night and with Yaidan, this isn’t easy to do. Most times he is on my hip. It seems like he still has colic, he still has lots of his crying fits. He basically cluster feeds now. And you guessed it, no-one else exists to him for the most part. He will go to others, for maybe ten to fifteen minutes at a time. Barely enough time for me to catch my breath. 

Mama, you aren’t alone in wondering how you will make it through

Thanksgiving With a Baby or Toddler

I have been following and joining many conversations on Facebook with other moms and what will they do with their baby or toddler while they are busy running around cooking, cleaning and entertaining guests. 

The common answer I see is, “the child will be so busy with guests and not to worry about it.” – But what if that isn’t the case? – What happens when it just isn’t that easy to do? What if you have a child with sensory or other limitations?

 I know the photos we see all across Facebook and Instagram will only show the fun parts of Thanksgiving, but what is really going on there? This year, I can’t show you my behind the scenes workload. If you would love to send in your Thanksgiving story with your baby or toddler, we would love to add it to this post ( email us the story and a photo that we can share to marilynprteam @gmail .com )

I cheated and we ordered catered foods! I honestly didn’t want to stress myself out. What else am I doing to make eating with a toddler easier, healthier, safer and overall stress free? I created a meal plan, a menu for Yaidan and collected some activities. 

Keep going, there are so many resources below, go through them all so you can have a wide variety of things to choose for your own baby or toddler.

Thanksgiving Toddler Food and Meal Plan

Have you been wondering what to feed your baby or toddler? 

Yes! This is so common, I’ve seen at least fifty conversions with at least one-hundred other moms replying to those posts; All wondering the same things about foods and our little ones. 

What to do when Aunty Jeanny wants Maxy (who is under six months old) to “try” some gravy, mashed potatoes or how about a lick of some ice cream, oh but Maxy will devour some of my pumpkin pie! 

Are … You … Cringing Yet?!!? I know I am. 

This taste or that lick isn’t good for such immature GI Tracts at all. Humans simply do not have digestive enzymes to digest anything but milk until after they are six months old. You are causing harm to their GI Tract by giving them something their body isn’t physically capable of processing just yet. You know those adults with things like GERD, IBS and other GI issues, well it all started with a taste, a bite and a lick of something other than milk before age six months old.

Put together a meal plan, with a menu. Include the whole days worth of food and drinks, not just dinner.
Here is  Free Download and Print Baby – Toddler Menu and Meal Planner.


So what can you give your baby that is older than six months old? They just aren’t exactly ready to chomp on everything on our plates but you don’t want them grabbing at your foods either. And you want to help them feel like they are inclusive of family Thanksgiving dinner. 

Check out some nutritional information about what we are eating on Thanksgiving Day

Food And Drinks For a Filling and Healthy Thanksgiving Baby or Toddler Belly

Ideas of food choices for older babies ( 6+ months ), toddlers and even some preschoolers can easily and safely enjoy Thanksgiving meals from brands such as Earth’s Best, Ella’s Kitchen and Gerber. 

Make Little Ones Little Foodies By Introducing Flavors And Textures – Even Spices! Little Ones Can Enjoy Cinnamon, Cumin & Rosemary. ~ Get Your Little Foodie Going This Holiday Season! – Deena Blanchard MD, MPH is a board certified pediatrician working at Premier Pediatrics.

A Baby or Toddler Thanksgiving breakfast can include some fruit , yogurt from Gerber, Cheerios an egg (for toddler) and a couple of ounces of Ella’s Kitchen juice. 

Baby’s First Thanksgiving Breakfast Meal Idea


Toddler’s First Thanksgiving Breakfast Meal Idea



A Baby or Toddler Thanksgiving Lunch can include Ella’s Kitchen – Chicken Casserole, some Earth’s Best Mac n Cheese with Carrots and Broccoli pieces, if there are any fruits left over from breakfast and the remaining juice from the morning. 

Baby’s First Thanksgiving Lunch Meal Idea


Toddler’s First Thanksgiving Lunch Meal Idea



A Baby or Toddler Thanksgiving Dinner can be the main feast! Earth’s Best has a tasty Turkey dinner. Your child wont have to miss a thing when it comes to sharing foods that are like our own, except their foods have just the right amount of seasonings that are just right for their developing and growing bodies.

Baby’s First Thanksgiving Dinner Meal Idea


Toddler’s First Thanksgiving Dinner Meal Idea



Thanksgiving Snacks For Baby Or Toddler

If you can prepare some snacks ahead of time, that would save you some anxiety on Turkey day. If not, here are some snack suggestions to keep on hand for your baby or toddler. Sometimes they just need a little snack in between meals. Have these ready to eat so reduce hunger meltdowns.


How about Toddler Thanksgiving Entertainment, What Can They Do? 

Set up a Toddler activity center. Get various art supplies that are safe for toddlers like crayons made for toddlers, paper, feathers, glue sticks, Popsicle sticks and other fun items. Let them explore the supplies and freely create something.

The more items that can be used independently without too much help from you, the better. One item can entertain a toddler for about fifteen minutes. That gives you time to check on the turkey! 

Prepare multiple activities ahead of time when it comes to having toddlers or preschoolers during the thanksgiving celebrations. Make a Thanksgiving Sensory Bin with items that let them use various senses. Items can be Thanksgiving themed felt pieces, colored rice, feathers,  buttons, pumpkin scented Playdoh and other Thanksgiving related items that are also safe for your child. 

Put together an activity center where it’s not in the way but you can also keep a watchful eye out. 

Check out Toddler Workboxes, setting this up ahead of time will save so much frustration on thanksgiving day. Click through this slideshow for more Thanksgiving fun that are baby and toddler friendly.


DIY Thanksgiving Hat Kids Craft Honey and Lime Blog

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DIY Thankgiving Turkey Hat Tutorial | Thank you Deanna for your contribution!

Halloween Goodies Swap Challenge

Halloween Goodies Swap Challenge

I am challenging you to participate in a Nutritional Halloween Snack Swap. How many times have we gone trick-or-treating during Halloween and get a humongous bag full of candy for our little ones?


Every single year, right! With so much information out there about our nutritional needs we can especially use them for Halloween too.


Halloween marks a time when many begin to fall off their wagon and give into all the sugar and simple carbs that we are bombarded with.


We can begin to change this behavior starting out with our children is really important.

What we do with our children today shapes their entire future. Below are some interesting things to offer.

Goodies don’t have to be just candy anymore.

Halloween time has such a huge selection of fun things to use as goodies for Halloween parties and even your trick-or-treaters.

Greet your Halloween guests with various Halloween goodies such as toys, books and a wide range of tasty snacks.

For example when your party guests arrive, greet them with a smoothie. Instead of juice, a smoothie is a nutritional Halloween Snack Swap choice. This smoothie is also a great choice to take along your Halloween Trick-or-Treat route.


 Year after year, it is the same thing. Going from neighbor to neighbor all handing out things that contribute to diabetes and other health issues.

What about those children who have food allergies? Or children whose parents do not give them candy. Offering alternatives for children allows more children to participate.


What about tired toddlers and preschoolers? Having a toddler and preschooler party allows children in these age ranges to feel included in the festivities. It gets tiring walking around.

Do you host or attend a Toddler Halloween Party?

I am already planning my toddler and preschool friendly Halloween party for next year.

What else can you include in your Halloween Goodies Swap

It is time we adopt new Halloween goodies traditions.  Have you ever tried to hand out something other than candies like little toys little mini books crayons, coloring books and healthy snacks.


These are some fun Halloween goodies to pass out that gives the children something else to do, other than goggle up cavities….. ooops, I mean candy.

There Are a Variety Of Nutritional Halloween Snacks Are Available Including Activities to Use Them With

Have you seen Kate’s Green Halloween Treats I love her ideas, they are fun and the kids don’t even realize the focus is on healthier snacks.

I saw that Earths Best has little cookies with letters on it. How cool is that to give away some little snacks that has letters on them. Not only are they a nutritional snack but also a fun activity the kids can use for spelling out words.

We went and picked up some letter cookies


They can help each other spell their name, a  pets name,  your name,  dad’s name oh my gosh just the possibilities would be endless.

What a great way to introduce your preschooler into phonics as well. Letter recognition, matching letters and even beginning how to spell two letter to three letter words.  


Confessions Of A Homeschooler offers free Letter Of the Week printables, she has paid versions too. Use resources like this with these cookies, it is perfect and it fits really well with it too.


What Nutritional Halloween Snacks Did You Make The Switch With? 

You can give your child a pouch food to snack on while your trick-or-treating or just before you go trick-or-treating that way they’re not saying “hey I want to piece of candy”. Not knowing whether the candy from this house or that house is a safe piece of candy before you can get a chance to check the candy to make sure it’s OK.

Check out the snack variety Ella’s Kitchen offers


I highly suggest  taking along some snacks to give your child a snack for the Halloween adventures.

 I took the Nutritional Halloween Snack Swap Challenge and here is what I came up with:

  1. Ella’s Kitchen pouch foods 
  2. Ella’s Kitchen juice box and a smoothie
  3. Earth’s Best letters and their chocolate chip cookies in a little Ziploc bag 

Before we left my toddler ate some of his fruit and veggie melts that I make for him daily.



What choices did you make for the Nutritional Halloween Snack Swap? Give us some suggestions in the conversation below. 

Here are some other Spooky Halloween things to do too

Bloody Eye Popcorn

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Here is the simple recipe: ½ c dehydrated strawberries, ground into powder. 4 c of popcorn, popped. 1 Tbl. Betsy’s Best peanut butter, almond butter or seedbutter. 3 Tbl. rice syrup 4 Tbl. butter 1 bag eyeball candy Melt together the butter, Betsy’s Best and rice syrup in a microwave for approximately 30 45 seconds, remove and stir until smooth. Add the strawberry powder and mix until smooth. Pour over popcorn in a bowl and mix with spatula.


Free Breastfeeding Printable Bundle


Grab These Breastfeeding Printable Pages To Help You With The Journey

This breastfeeding printable has lots of helpful pages to help you from planning, how to deal with non-breastfeeders, and even going back to work!

Please make sure that you have the most up to date Breastfeeding Printable Bundle – WHen you signup, we will email you with the latest version, just in case it didn’t get to you, sign up again. This printable is updated as information changes and I add more pages. 

breastfeeding. lactation. nursing. breastpump.

The Breastfeeding Printable That Does It All For You

I wanted to create something for breastfeeding moms to help them have a better outcome and experience with breastfeeding.Whether you are feeding directly from the breast, using donor milk, going back to work or pumping for other babies, there is something to help you out. 

Are you nervous or wondering how other moms experiences were, check out these Breastfeeding Stories Here

This Breastfeeding Printable pack includes things like

  • Travel Cards
  • Hospital Cards
  • Reminders
  • Tips and Tricks

That is just a few of the goodies you will find inside. I created it so that you can easily print them out on Avery 8876 Double-Sided Business Cards, I recommend getting them on thick cardstock or you can even get a few hundred printed up through Vista Print, for less than twenty dollars. Why would you want to print so many? Once you open up the whole bundle, you will see some of the cards are made so that you print them up and give them to others, depends on the card. 

Bassinet Breastfeeding Printable

This is for you to use in the hospital or even at home when the baby first comes home. This is handy if you happen to have helpers coming in, the babies info is right there for them to be reminded of important info. 

breastfeeding. bassinet hospital card. lactation.

Also included with the bassinet card is a quick tips section. This helps remind yourself and possibly others how to help you begin your breastfeeding journey on the right foot. 

Breastfeeding Printable Tracking Log

Many moms feel more comfortable tracking their babies first few weeks. This time can be overwhelming and exhausting, so this tracking log can help alleviate some stress about your babies feeding routine. 

This is not meant to say that baby must feed from both sides for a specific amount of time. It is meant to help you and any helpers learn your babies feeding pattern. 

breastfeeding log. infant feeding tracker. infant feeding log.Breastfeeding .

Breastfeeding your baby should not be timed, but it can be helpful to learn your babies feeding routines so that you can plan for things like going out and handling other life tasks. Let baby feed on one side for as long as they want to, when they unlatch on their own, burp, change the diaper, burp again and then try to offer the second side. It is ok if baby chooses to not take both sides. 

Tracking helped me learn that my baby got full on one or both sides at certain times of the daytime. It was easier to plan for doctor appointments, showers, cleaning and spending time with myself and other family members. 

Your Right To Breastfeed Should Not Be Someone Else’s Decision!

Breastfeeding is biologically normal. We are created to begin life getting nourished with our own customized milk that moms body produces. It should never be illegal to breastfeed your child in any part of the world. Will people have their own preferences, sure, it is 2017, but that does not give others the ability to make a decision that needs to be moms only. 

ability to breastfeed. breastfeed, lactation.

This license to breastfeed cards are meant for you to print out multiple cards onto thick cardstock in a business card size. This makes it super easy to toss inside your diaper bag and hand out to those nay-sayers or people who think it is their right to intrude in your personal space, your personal business and try to dictate whether or not you should be breastfeeding, how to breastfeed, for how long and the hottest “controversy”…. to cover or do not cover. 

states legal to breastfeed in. breastfeeding friendly states. breastfeeding laws.

These are cards that I print double-sided in business card size in the hundreds. They are small, handy and have good info to show the other person that breastfeeding is normal and is also legal and no, you do not have to practically suffocate your baby under a cover in order to nurse the baby. 

Never breastfeed a baby in the bathroom! This is highly disgusting, extremely unsanitary… You Would Never Eat In A Bathroom, Please Do Not Breastfeed Or Pump Milk Inside One.

Break Time For Breastfeeding And Pumping Moms

One of the hardest times for a breastfeeding mom is the decision to go back to work. Everything about it has so many emotions and things to consider. Thankfully, though we should not need something that is so biologically normal, we have laws that protect your decision and journey to continue giving breastmilk to your baby. 

take enough breaks for successful breastfeeding. breastfeeding. breastfeeding breaks


Thank You For Nursing Your Baby

I know, I know it can be quite weird when someone comes up to you or you are approached and someone Thanks You for doing something that should be expected, something that is biologically normal… But these days, it is very helpful to have someone come up to you and give you a “breast” bump haha. 

If you participate in a local nurse-in or during World Breastfeeding Week, print up multiple sets of these cards and create Breast Goody Bags, this is what I do and hand them out. If you would like to have me make these for you, and all you have to do is pass them out, please email

Click On This Photo To Grab Your Breastfeeding Printable Bundle

breastfeeding. breastfeeding in public.

This is another card that I print out onto business cards, in the hundreds. When I see a mom nursing her baby, or getting ready to or even when I see familiar breastfeeding friendly items, I try to go up to them, nicely and being friendly and give them this card, it is like a fist-bump in solidarity. 

  • Please Note That Not All The Pages Included Are Listed Here In This Post. Also, These Photos Will Not Print Correctly If You Try To Save And Print. These Photos Are Only For The Visual Purpose For You Tko See Some Of The Pages Included. You Will Get The High-Resolution Ready To Print Files Sent Through Your EMail Provided. You Can Click Any Of The Photos To Request Your Free Breastfeeding Printable.

Tell Us In The Comments How You Used This Breastfeeding Printable Bundle – Any Suggestions For Add-Ons?