Comfort The Child of a Deployed Soldier!

I discovered Cuddletunes several months ago and knew right away that a Cuddletunes Bear was the perfect gift for a child of a deployed soldier.

My youngest son just returned from a tour of duty in Afghanistan. While he was away, I connected with many soldiers’ families who had young children. I can’t tell you how heartbreaking it is to hear a military wife talk about her four-year-old crying herself to sleep because she misses her daddy! In the next few months, my oldest son–the father of my two precious grandchildren–will deploy for the first time. As soon as I found out about his upcoming tour of duty, I knew I had to get a Cuddletunes Bear for both of my sweet grandchildren. I’ve had the bears for months and they are now wrapped and waiting under my Christmas tree. I know my grandchildren will love them, but they won’t fully appreciate them until their daddy is away from home (okay, I’m about to cry now)!

As a child snuggles to sleep, they will be comforted by YOUR lullabies, stories, even the sound of YOUR familiar voice. A Cuddletunes Bear helps bridge time and distance and makes being away from the special people in their lives a little easier.

The Cuddletunes 9” teddy bear has built-in speakers and a hidden MP3 player and USB cord that make it easy for far-off relatives to record songs, stories and greetings for little ones back home. jasmere tested the Cuddletunes bear on a little boy who was thrilled to hear his uncle’s voice emanating from the Cuddletunes bear. Though the songs and stories were recorded via Internet from half a world away, their warmth was delivered seamlessly in a plush and cuddly package.

A Cuddletunes message can be updated remotely, and easily, by one or many friends or relatives. There’s also a wide selection of pre-recorded lullabies and stories to complement your own recordings. My son and I plan to record our favorite children’s book–I’ll Love You Forever–together for my grandchildren to hear. As he prepares to deploy, he will have time to record bedtime messages for the children he loves–and will miss–so much.

Today’s jasmere deal allows you to purchase 3 vouchers that you can redeem for the purchase of a Cuddletunes Bear for just $27 each (a $60 value). Shipping is just $8.95.

The Cuddletunes Bears are identical except for the ribbon color–choose from pink, blue, or yellow. I already have the two I purchased for my grandchildren, and the bear is so precious! The controls for the MP3 player are discreetly concealed in the bear’s paw, making it easy for little hands to play the recordings.

I am purchasing two of these vouchers myself so that I can donate Cuddletunes Bears to military families. And one of my new fans–a wonderful gentlemen who found out I planned to help a military family–is transferring his $10 in jasmere credits to me so that I can buy a third bear. If you’d like to help, all you have to do is join jasmere by clicking here.

If there’s anyone out there among you who wants to donate your credits or purchase a bear for a military family, let me know. jasmere will facilitate the transfer of credits. However, remember, I can only purchase three (3) bears. So here’s how this is going to work:

UPDATE: After I posted this giveaway, I received a message from Don Robinson at Cuddletunes, who loved the idea and has agreed to donate 3 ADDITIONAL BEARS to this cause! Thank you, Don!

If you are a  family of a deployed soldier, you are eligible to enter to win a Cuddletunes bear from Pennywise Panache with the help of some of her amazing elves (um, fans)!

  1. To be eligible to win, the person who enters must be a family member of a deployed soldier who has a child aged eight years or under.
  2. Post a comment below telling me why your child should receive a Cuddletunes Bear. Your comment should include the age, gender and first name of the child. Be sure to include your email address so that I can notify the winner.
  3. The winners will be asked to provide proof of military service (a scanned or faxed copy of a military ID will suffice).
  4. I will ask my new fan, who helped me with this giveaway, to help me choose the three winners.
  5. Contest ends at 11:59 PM ET, Wednesday, December 15, 2010. Winners will be notified by midnight ET, Friday, December 17, 2010.
  6. The winner will receive a jasmere voucher good toward the purchase of a Cuddletunes Bear.
  7. While this is not a requirement, I’d love to have a picture of the winning military family or the soldier holding his/her child.

If you’d like to know more about jasmere and how it works, click here.

Thanks so much to Wayne and Katie Weisberg for contributing to this giveaway and helping spread the word! I don’t know you personally, but I am overwhelmed by your willingness to help military families!

Winners must respond to email within 48 hours of notification of prize winnings or another winner will be chosen.  Family members of Pennywise Panache are not eligible to particpate in this giveaway.  Previous Pennywise Panache contest/giveaway winners are not eligible to participate.  Contest open to U.S. Military families only.

Comments

  1. Candice Logan says:

    My little girl, Marlee, is 9 months old right now. Her Daddy is leaving for his 2nd deployment in less than 2 months, which means he will miss her 1st birthday :o ( We would love for him to be able to give her a Cuddletunes bear for her birthday so she can remember his voice & hear it any time she wants. This sounds like a wonderful item & I think my daughter would really enjoy it. Her Daddy is worried that she won’t know/ remember him when he gets back from deployment, but with being able to hear his voice & see pictures anytime, how could she forget?! :o )
    Thank you for doing this & bringing such a great item to our attention!
    ~Candice Logan
    blucandie@hotmail.com

  2. admin says:

    Candice, I wish there were no wars. Tell your husband how much his service is appreciated!

  3. What a wonderful idea! I’ll buy 3 myself!

  4. Iris Cartier says:

    When I first saw the cuddletunes bears I had a flash of my two little ones waking up on Christmas morning and opening the bear. I can almost see the excitement on their faces and imagine their happy laughs as they listen to Daddy wish them a Merry Christmas. I have two children, Sean is 7 and Caroline is 5. We are currently in the midst of our 3rd deployment. When Sean and Caroline get the chance to talk to their Daddy it makes all the difference in the world. But he can’t be always be there when they miss him and want to talk to him. I think if they had this cuddletunes bear they could listen to his voice and feel connected to him. It would be a way to include Daddy in story time, prayers, and to listen to the silly stories I know he would want to tell. Thank you for sharing this opportunity. You will make a big difference for a lucky military family.
    Iris Cartier

  5. admin says:

    Mike, thank you so much for your generous offer! I’m going to update the blog post and extend the deadline a week. The entries are low and I’ve put out some feelers today to boost them.

    Thanks for your support of the troops! As a military mom, just knowing that people are willing to show their patriotism during war time gives my spirits a lift. I never knew until I experience it how hard a deployment can be. I can’t even imagine how hard it must be on children. Thank you so much!

  6. admin says:

    Iris, God bless your family! I will be remembering you and the other families in my prayers!

  7. Marci says:

    Hi! I am Marci and my husband is currently deployed to Iraq through the National Guard for a year. He has been gone about 3 months now. I have twin 6 year olds and a four year old. They have all been begging for a daddy soldier doll for Christmas, but I didn’t get one at our Yellow Ribbon and can’t find affordable ones online. Since my hubby is National Guard, his take home pay was cut greatly as soon as he became active duty, so I have been selling things on Ebay and cutting our costs as much as possible to make ends meet. I am not asking for sympathy; we are proud to serve and I only sold our wants, not our needs, but it would sure be nice if we could get a bear. If not, we are happy for whoever gets it. I can’t call my husband because his mission is classified, we have to wait for him to call, so the kids don’t get to talk to him as much as I would like. Thank you.

  8. Ashley Edwards says:

    I am a young mother of two my son aiden who just turned 2 in oct then my daughter amia who is almost 3 months old. my finace is in afghan for his 1st deployment. we are having a hard time from being with him esp our two year old son who ask’s for him all the time and is always asking ” mommy when will daddy be home” it breaks my heart everytime i hear those words come out of his mouth. my daughter has no clue shes young and shes only spent four days with him before he got sent overseas and its hard because now that shes gettin older and starting to hear i think this bear would be amazing for her so she would be able to know what daddy sounds like and when he comes home she would know who he is by his voice and for our son aiden oh god he prob wouldnt ask for anything better if he could.. it’d be like he never left us. cuddletunes bears i know would be the greatest thing that has happen to my children. && this is a amazing idea to do.

  9. Rachel Briggs says:

    Oh my gosh. Thank you SO much for doing this giveaway, this post seriously brought me to tears.

    My husband is currently deployed in Afghanistan. We have three children: an 8 year old girl, and two boys, ages 3 and 4. We attended his send-off ceremony in September, and it was the most heartbreaking thing I have done in my entire life. It was awful…I was crying, my kids were wailing, the children and families around us were sobbing. We all stood there, in agony, until long after the buses left. I’m crying as I type this, just remembering that day. And the whole time, there was a film crew recording us. They stayed and recorded us all the way up until the last family members started making their way to their cars. I realize the purpose of the news team being there, but to me, in those moments, it felt like a huge slap in the face and exploitation of our pain. I want the news there when I’m smiling, when he comes home. Not when I’m crying and consoling my brokenhearted children.

    Anyway, I had heard of the Cuddletunes bears before, and I wanted to get them for my kids…but I had NO idea that you could upload things to it remotely. This would be so great for my kiddos…my husband has Internet access, and I regularly send him care packages, so I could send him new books to read and upload them into the bear.

    Congratulations on your son’s homecoming! I imagine what it will be like to have my husband home every day. I play scenarios in my head of running up to him with the kids and swarming him in a hug. It’s been three months…it’s getting a little easier…but I don’t think it will stop hurting until he’s home again.

  10. admin says:

    Rachel, I remember how hard it was to send my son off, and the news crews are standing around at the homecoming the same way they did when the soldiers deployed. I can tell you this–sending my son off was the hardest thing I’ve ever done as a mom. And seeing him come home was the biggest relief–ever!

    I’m so sorry your husband will be away over the holidays. My heart breaks for you because I know how hard it is from a mom’s perspective. I can’t even imagine how hard it is for a child.

    Thanks for sharing, and please pass the word to other families about the giveaway. God speed!

  11. Tara Richardson says:

    What a kind and wonderful giveaway!
    My husband is currently not deployed, though we are counting down the months till he goes on his 2nd one in 2 years. We have a 2 year old daughter who is so attached to Daddy that she will sometimes cry and beg Daddy to stay home with her when he leaves for work.. (that breaks both mine and my husband’s heart).
    We had only been back in the States for 6 months when my husband left for his 1st deployment from this base. Our daughter had turned one, two weeks prior and to help her adjust to his abscence I made her a “Daddy Book” and I made my husband one as well. She would look at the photo book all the time and give Daddy kisses, the book almost lasted the whole deployment until she disovered the toilet. haha
    I really think a Cuddlestune could help my little girl during the next deployment as she is going to be older and more aware of the fact that Daddy is gone for awhile. She and Daddy love to sing together and she loves to have him read her stories, so hearing his voice would be the next best thing!
    Again, thank you for such a thoughtful giveaway, and I pray that your son and his family will have a smooth transition with his upcoming deployment. Happy Holidays!

  12. admin says:

    Tara, it’s hard to read stories like yours. I can’t imagine how hard it must be for a child to miss her daddy so much when there’s no way she can understand why he is gone for so long. Your book sounds like a wonderful idea! Where will your husband be this deployment?

    My prayers are with you and your family. The entire time my youngest son was away, I kept trying to think of ways to help families. I found it very difficult to get involved with his battalion’s family support group–for some reason, the mothers of soldiers don’t attend those meetings, and I felt very isolated. When I am going through something difficult, it helps me so much to help others, and I found it hard to do that. I participated in fundraisers and those sorts of things, but I found that I wanted to be more hands on and do something that could really touch a family. I’m still looking for a way to do that.

    This has been my favorite giveaway ever because I have such an emotional attachment to military families. I can say, with some embarrassment, that I did not fully appreciate the sacrifices of soldiers and their families until I experienced it. All of you have my undying gratitude for what you do to support the soldiers who fight for our freedoms!

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