Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Act Fast! Active Life:Explorer with Mat for Wii only 29.99!

This appears to be an excellent deal seeing as the game alone sells for more than this bundle. This is $29.99 including shipping as it qualifies for "Free Super Saver Shipping".  I would act fast since I'm sure that this one won't last!  (Mine has already shipped with a delivery date of  Dec. 31st!)

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Widescreen Edition)

Amazon currently has this DVD for $5.99 and it is eligible for free super saver shipping or free shipping with Amazon Prime or Amazon Mom.  This deal is even sweeter since it qualifies for Amazon's current special offer:  "Get $5 worth of eligible movies and TV shows from Amazon Video On Demand after you order your item. Limited to one promotional credit per customer. "

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

The Story of Christ's Birth

Luke 2:1-20


And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This census first took place while Quirinius was governing Syria. So all went to be registered, everyone to his own city.

Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife, who was with child.

So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night.And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid.

Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.
And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.”
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:

“ Glory to God in the highest,

And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”

Sunday, December 12, 2010

LeapFrog items for under $5



For those of you that love educational toys and LeapFrog, here are some terrific deals Amazon has going on right now.  All of the above are offered at under $5!  I'm sure at that price they won't last long!  Just click the title you are interested in and it will take you to the page with the special price.  Happy Shopping!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Hot Toy Deals under $10




Yes, you read the title correctly!  I just picked up some fabulous hidden deals on Amazon.  I say hidden because in doing a general search of most of these toys the under $10 deals did not show up.  I have included the links in the carousel above so you can go directly to the best offers!  Toys that have been as much as $39.99 are on this list.  For example the new "Crayola Glow Station can create with Light" retails for $39.99.  The best price I had found for it was $19.99 at Target this week but Amazon has it for $9.99.  I know these deals won't last long so if you are looking for economical last minute HOT toys for a child on your list you better get to shopping! ;)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

The Flightless Goose Book Review

When I volunteered to review a new children's book I had no idea what a treat that I was in for.  The Flightlesss Goose is based on a true story.  The story is written by Eric Goodman and beautifully illustrated in watercolor by his wife Nataliya.  The book is Published by The Writer's Lair Books.

The title cues you in on the book's story.  The author has taken the story of a goose to help teach children that we are all different and have different talents or gifts.  This is not a story with a fairytale ending however is a story with a realistic, true and honest ending that can give hope to adults and children alike.  The author uses the book to show children that no matter what our limitations might be each of us has a gift and we need to use it.  I would encourage educators, parents, grandparents and anyone who has a child in their life to check out this book.  I would say it would be a must have for any school library.  Check out The Flightless Goose  which is a fun site offering a sneak peek into this amazing book and The Writer's Lair Books for information on the book from the publisher.  The book is hardback and retails for $15.95 and is available for purchase through The Flightless Goose Website   and Amazon. A fun read-a-long CD is available through the book's website.

I love giving books as gifts so don't forget that this would make an excellent Christmas gift for children or teachers!

*Disclosure:  I was given a copy of the book and audio CD in exchange for my honest review.  I received no monetary compensation for this post.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Hospitals Should Not Be The Cause Of Infection

Having worked in the healthcare industry myself and knowing many who still do, when I was contacted to share the following information with you I jumped at the chance.  Even if you don't work in the healthcare industry this information is important for you to know too!

The following information provided by http://hiawatchnews.com a program of Kimberly-Clark:

Earlier this year, the Department of Health & Human Services released its annual report on the quality of health care Americans receive. While there have been some improvements, hospitals still have work to do to put an end to the ongoing - but solvable - problem of Healthcare-Associated Infections (HAIs).

Caregivers and other healthcare professionals know steps need to be taken to protect patients from HAIs, but it will take strong leadership to make the changes necessary to reduce the likelihood of these life-threatening infections. To help achieve this goal, Kimberly-Clark Health Care launched "Not on My Watch" (www.haiwatch.com), a website that provides tools and information to help facilities eliminate HAIs.
http://haiwatchnews.com/

Also* Kimberly-Clark will match all year-end gifts to the AORN (Association of periOperative Registered Nurses)  Foundation made by AORN members up to $20,000. All donations will be used to support education, research and patient safety initiatives.

I hope you will take time to watch this under 2 minute video.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The Versatile Blogger Award


I want to extend a HUGE Thank you to TwinkieMommie for giving me my first blog award.  I hope that all of you will take a few minutes to check out and follow her blog.

~To accept this award there are 4 rules~

1. Thank the person who gave you the award.  THANK YOU! TwinkieMommie

2.  Share Seven Things about yourself
  1. I would consider myself shy but my friends would laugh at that description.
  2. I am the proud mother of an amazing tween.
  3. I love getting great deals.
  4. I am a huge foodie!  I like everything but mashed potatoes and ground beef.
  5. I DO NOT like to cook.  See #4- I'd rather eat.
  6. It took me forever to take the plunge into blogging but I am so glad that I did.
  7. I have a goal to start scrapbooking and jewelry making.
3.  Pass the award on to 12 bloggers you have recently discovered and who you think are fantastic.

Ann Crabs

Titus 2 Mommy of 2

Lifeonprint~Life through my Eyes

Contest Corner

Networking Witches

Strange Daze Indeed

Susieqtpies Scraps of Life

That Shaker of Salt

Guessing All The Way

Marvelous Mom Reviews

More Than Cents

Life Is Too Short 

4.  Contact the bloggers that you pick and let them know about the award.

Thank you again TwinkieMommie!

Blogger MIA

I want to apologize for being MIA lately.  I do want to say for the record, that I took up this blog as a hobby and will always put family first.  The good news is that I have gotten to spend time with family and extended family making lasting memories.  I would encourage each of you to take tech free vacations or semi vacations and do the same.  I thank you all for following and supporting me on my endeavor.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Reminder

Don't forget to "fall back" this weekend.  We gain an extra hour!  Make sure to update all of your clocks so that you will be on time Monday morning.  I hope everyone has a great weekend!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

KT Tunstall Tiger Suit Review

 

 KT Tunstall's newest album Tiger Suit was released Oct. 5, 2010.  This album is very promising with the first single released, "Fade Like a Shadow" already making it to radio's top 20.  I can't help but think of "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" when I think of KT Tunstall.  I loved that song and it's catchy tune. 

Thanks to One 2 One network I received a copy of Tiger Suit for review.  This album includes storytelling songs that we have come to expect from KT Tunstall.  I found this to be a great album to listen to throughout the busy day.  Tunstall's creative songwriting and captivating voice makes her music appealing to music lovers from multiple genres.  Tunstall is a grammy -nominated, multi-platinum singer-songwriter.  If you are a music lover I encourage you to check out Tiger Suit.  You may listen to samples and purchase Tiger Suit by clicking this: Amazon.com link.  Concert goers will want to check KT Tunstall's website for concert dates.  Her Fall tour will be 10/31-12/1.
For additional info:
* Website: http://bit.ly/KTsite

* Video: http://bit.ly/KTflasvid
* Twitter: http://bit.ly/KTtwitter
* Facebook: http://bit.ly/KTfbook
* Album Preview: http://bit.ly/KTpreview

*This review is my personal opinion, I am entered to win a gift card through One2One Network by participating.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Great Deal on Amazon! PopChips

Amazon is running another excellent sale on PopChips.  If you haven't tasted these, I love them.  They are baked and "popped" instead of fried.  I tried these a couple of months ago when Amazon ran a similar offer and we went through a case of 24 individual packs in no time.  The link shows a case of  regular flavor but others are available at the starting price of  $13.42.  Utilize the subscribe and save function (saves 15% and ships for free) along with this months code OCTOPOPS at check out for additional savings making these $9.40 a case or approx. .39 a bag.  While this isn't a "steal" this is a good price on a good item for children's lunches and snacks. 
*A note about Subscribe and Save.  After your order arrives you may cancel the subscribe and save if you do not want to receive automatic shipments.  Just visit your Amazon Account and Subscription tag and unsubscribe.

If you'd like to order I have included a link and would appreciate if you ordered through the blog link.  I am an amazon affiliate and you would be supporting my blog by doing so.  Thank you.
Please feel free to leave some comment love and I will return the favor.  Thanks for visiting my blog.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Contest Corner Giveaway

Contest Corner is currently hosting a giveaway through Walt Disney Records.  She is giving away one copy of Disney Villains: Simply Sinister Songs.  We have an older Disney Cd of villain songs and just love them.  I would love to win this one and am doing this post to obtain an extra entry into her giveaway.  Giveaway ends Sept 12 @ 11:59 PM PST.  You may enter here : Contest Corner.  Please add to your entry that you heard about her giveaway through StuffSmart.  Thank you and Good Luck!

Disney Villains: Simply Sinister Songs track list:

1. Pink Elephants on Parade: Dumbo
2. Siamese Cat: Song Lady and the Tramp
3. Cruella De Vil: 101 Dalmatians
4. I Wan’na Be Like You (The Monkey Song): The Jungle Book
5. Every Little Piece: Pete’s Dragon
6. Poor Unfortunate Souls: The Little Mermaid
7. Gaston: Beauty and the Beast
8. Oogie Boogie’s Song: The Nightmare Before Christmas
9. You’re Only Second Rate (The Return of Jafar): Aladdin and the King of Thieves
10. Be Prepared: The Lion King
11. Snuff Out the Light (Yzma’s Song): The Emperor’s New Groove
12. Yodel-Adle-Eedle-Idle-Oo : Home on the Range
13. Friends on the Other Side: The Princess and the Frog

Friday, September 10, 2010

Elmer’s Virtual Bag It Forward

I received a virtual bag from Contest Corner and am very thankful to one of my favorite bloggers and tweeter's for letting me know about this exciting opportunity.
Elmer’s will donate up to $10,000 to Adopt-A-Classroom with your participation. Join now!


The Elmer’s Virtual Bag It Forward is charity blog meme, bloggers are able to raise $10 per blog post for Adopt-A-Classroom by writing a blog post or Facebook note and donating a virtual bag of school supplies . Elmer’s will donate $10 per each post written for Adopt-A-Classroom, up to $10,000. *From the official site where you can read more.


ELMER’S VIRTUAL BAG IT FORWARD RULES


 
  • Copy and paste these rules into your blog post or Facebook note.
  • Create a post giving a “virtual bag of school supplies” to other bloggers or write about your Back to School shopping trip at Walmart.
  • Link back to the person who gave you a bag of school supplies.
  • Let each person you are giving a virtual bag of school supplies know you have given them a bag.
  • Leave your link in the Elmer’s Virtual Bag It Forward comment section. You can also find the official rules of this virtual #bagitforward program there.
  • Elmer’s is donating $10 for each blog participating in the Virtual Bag It Forward Donation to Adopt-A-Classroom (up to total of $10,000 for blog posts written by September 10,2010).
  • Please note that only one blog post per blog url will count towards the donation.

 Here is the photo you can use for your virtual bag or create your own!

 


The program ends 9/10/2010 at 11:59 pm EST.

I am sending my virtual bag of school supplies to Ann at Ann-Crabs.

Friday, September 3, 2010

10 Ways of Making Your Favorite Foods Healthier

When I saw the newest Twittermoms challenge I was a  little overwhelmed being a self proclaimed junk food junkie then read a little more to it and was glad I did.  I have more healthy tips than I thought making me wonder if I am going to tarnish my image by doing this post.  I guess I am a foodie in general!  I've been paying particular attention to making healthy food available since I became a mom and since several close family members have faced issues such as obesity, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes and even cancer.

  1. Love macaroni and cheese?  We often add frozen peas to them to get a green veggie in and to make a favorite not so healthy food a bit healthier.  It also adds a little crunch!
  2. Lasagna is a favorite food at our house.  We make it just a bit healthier by making it all veggie by using a vegetarian meat substitute and we usually sneak in a little spinach.
  3. Chili is another favorite at our house and I always make it with a veggie product instead of meat.  You would be surprised once you get used to it how much your digestive system will thank you for it.
  4. Remember I told you about my sweet tooth.  You may add spinach to brownies to sneak in a little extra veggies and to decrease your guilt.
  5. Watch your beverages.  Many of us consume many calories via beverages.  Like lemonade?  You may add fresh lemon to ice water for a sugar free alternative.
  6. I love smoothies!  There are several recipes all over the net to add spinach and other veggies to your fruit smoothies without changing the taste.  This is a great way to start your hurried day.
  7. Making a casserole?  Veggies such as carrots may be shredded and added without affecting the taste.  Doing this can help you get enough veggies into your family's day.
  8. Portion control.  Does this make food healthier?  Yes, we don't need super sized portions.  If you can go from 3portions of lasagna to 1 serving size then compliment with fruit and veggies, your body will thank you in the long run.
  9. I like yogurt but sometimes the runny texture just isn't what I'm in the mood for.  I like to keep a box of grape nuts cereal on hand to mix in my yogurt.  This adds crunch and fiber making it a healthier sweet snack.
  10. Consider the way you cook your food.  Baking or grilling fish and chicken is much healthier than frying and can be just as good by adding the right seasonings.  Just make sure you aren't adding seasonings filled with salt.  Many salt free alternatives are available.
I hope I've got you thinking about making your favorite foods healthier.  Little changes can make more of a difference over time than no changes at all so don't be afraid to try a little at a time.  You may find your family doesn't notice the differences or that they like the changes.

Eating on the run.  Try Heinz Weight Watchers SmartOnes.  They are located in the freezer section at your grocer and are delicious.  When I worked outside of the home this was often my quick go to item for lunch.  Coupon Offer and Savings: http://www.eatyourbest.com/coupon

“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and WeightWatchers SmartOnes blogging program, making me eligible to get a $50 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Ten Tips for a Cleaner, Greener Home

One priority in our home has been to make our home cleaner and greener and we are always looking for new ways to do so.  A Greener Home is one that uses practices that do not harm the environment but help sustain it.  Part of our motivation for making our home greener is that I have asthma and allergies so I try to avoid strong cleaners.  We also utilize a septic system so we only use products that we can use without disturbing the balance of a septic system.  Here are just a few ways that we keep our home cleaner and greener.

  1. Use re-useable cloths for cleaning.  I have microfiber cloths for cleaning and dusting and they work well for dusting without any chemicals at all.  They also work beautifully on our wood floors.  When they are dirty I just throw them in the wash and can re-use them.
  2. With two girls in our house with long hair we have the challenge of keeping our drains clear.   Baking soda sprinkled down the drain followed by vinegar does a good job of clearing drains without harming the environment.
  3. Use natural lighting.  We open the windows and let the sun come in to help heat the house in the winter and to light the house naturally.  We have a skylight in one of our bathrooms that also works wonders keeping the toilet and tub clean.  Sunlight is a wonderful cleaner!
  4. When Spring rolls around and the ants come marching in, I use vinegar to wipe down the point of entry.  After a couple of applications the problem is solved without harsh or poisonous chemicals.
  5. When doing laundry I turn to detergents that are environmentally safe.  I also use 1cup of white vinegar in the rinse cycle as a fabric softener.  Don't worry about the vinegar smell, just dry as usual and your clothes will smell clean and fresh.
  6. Re-use!  We re-use several items in our household.  The item we re-use the most is coffee grounds.  They are great for our flower beds.  I just sprinkle them throughout our flowers and they love it!  This is a safe chemical free boost for your flowers.
  7. Lavender is our friend around our house.  My dd especially likes the scent to help her sleep.  I love it since reading that lavender helps repel head lice!  That is a great function for homes with school aged children.
  8. I recently purchased a handheld steam cleaner and absolutely love it for cleaning and sanitizing hard to clean surfaces.  It eliminates the need for chemicals to clean those grime monsters like your oven.
  9. Hydrogen Peroxide isn't just for the medicine cabinet.  It has many uses including removing tough stains like blood from laundry.  You do have to be careful since it acts like bleach so make sure you do your research and dilute it properly.  You may use it to whiten whites in lieu of chlorine bleach and Hydrogen Peroxide breaks down without harming the helpful bacteria in septic systems.
  10. I am not a cook nor do I claim to be so I have had more than my share of pots and pans with burnt or caked on food left on them.  Use Baking soda or a little borax and you can safely remove these little mistakes and leave your cookware looking as good as new without harsh chemicals.
I am always looking for new ways to make our home greener and would love to hear your suggestions so please feel free to comment.  I also make sure to follow blogs that post green options so that I can improve our Greener living practices.
Our family is also AVID recyclers.  If it can't be recycled do we really need it?  We try to limit household garbage to less than 3lbs a week.  Believe it or not, this is easier than you think.  Once you get in the swing of it recycling will become second nature and should leave you feeling good about yourself.  Don't forget to pass along green tips to your neighbors!  We need more Greener homes!

I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Mrs. Meyer’s blogging program, making me eligible to get a $30 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here .

For more information on Mrs Meyer's visit: http://www.mrsmeyers.com.
Join Mrs. Meyer’s on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/mrsmeyerscleanday

Friday, August 27, 2010

Ten Tips for Planning a Unique Baby Shower

Twittermoms has kept me busy today.  As my followers know I've had some lapses in between posts at times.  I love that Twittermoms inspires me and introduces me to new products.  Twittermoms is teaming up with Tiny Prints to challenge bloggers to share their 10 tips for planning a unique baby shower.

This is one of my favorite designs and can be found at Tiny Prints by clicking here .


It's been a little while since I've had to plan a shower but I love that baby shower's are changing with the times and incorporating the father more.

  1. Think outside the box.
  2. Include Dad and other male relatives incl. children.  Having a baby is so exciting for the entire family you must share this shower with everyone.
  3. Recruit helpers and delegate tasks.  Most of the time you will find plenty of people willing to help if you just ask.
  4. Don't break the bank.  Money spent on decorations may be better spent on gifts for the new mom.  Consider a theme that you can use household items or toys you already have to decorate with.  You can also use the nursery theme as your parties decorations.  If the Mom to be has registered for a particular pattern, you can use your gift as the decoration.
  5. Focus on the Mom to be.  Again, don't break the bank.  Have someone make the cake, ask close family members to bring items and assign them to bring nuts, mints, finger sandwiches etc.  Don't underestimate that Aunt So and So may be more than willing to help out.
  6. Secure a place to hold the shower that will accommodate the guests comfortably.  Family homes, Churches, recreation centers etc may be available for low or no cost.
  7. Order invitations from Tiny Prints for as low as 59cents/each! Here Below are two examples of the awesome options available.











8. Don't forget to go GREEN just like Tiny Prints "In addition, our high quality cardstock is made with fine craftsmanship using luxurious materials that are also easy on the environment."  Consider using towels, receiving blankets etc. in lieu of wrapping paper.

9. Playing games may be old school for showers but you can mix it up by posting guests guesses as to arrival date, sex, weight, length etc. on a decorative poster and take it to the hospital when the baby arrives to decorate the room with and to help the winner boast!

10.  Have fun and go with the flow!  Is that a unique tip?  It is if you are a perfectionist like I am.  Be sure to plan as much as you can and expect little things may come up but if you have utilized your volunteers Aunt ? last minute change of food she brings won't be noticed.

I haven't ordered from Tiny Prints personally but have read many blog posts about them and haven't seen a negative review yet.  Check out their Baby Shower Invitations for yourself.  You can even order samples before making your decision.

Not having a baby shower?  Visit  http://www.tinyprints.com/  to see their selection of cards for all occasions!  I hope to send out Christmas Cards this year and to have a family picture for one of Tiny Prints beautiful choices.

“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Tiny Prints blogging program, making me eligible to get a Tiny Prints gift code worth $50, plus 25 FREE Tiny Prints greeting cards—a total gift value of $149.75! For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Five Simple Things you can do for your Child to help keep their Smiles Healthy and Bright

TwitterMoms and Trident have teamed up and challenged twittermoms to post five simple things that you can do for your child to keep their smiles healthy and bright.  You can see the challenge here: http://www.twittermoms.com/forum/topics/share-five-simple-things-you

  1. Start dental care early.  It is best to start when your child first gets their teeth.  Since this happens early you will have to take responsibility for brushing and assist then through the toddler years to insure proper brushing.
  2. Encourage brushing.  We have our daughter brush after every meal. 
  3. Make brushing fun.  We have used minute times, music etc to keep brushing fun as well as to encourage brushing correctly.
  4. Offer healthy eating habits.  Snacking on veggies and fruits are best for teeth.  Don't forget to brush after those blueberries and staining fruits!
  5. Floss:   Make sure your child flosses daily.  Parents who practice good oral hygiene habits help their children pick up these good habits.  There are plenty of flosser gadgets and flavors of flosses to help keep your child motivated to floss.
I've always been a gum chewer especially when I am out and not able to brush after a meal.  But I learned from Trident and Twittermoms that I am actually I am practicing good oral hygiene by doing so.  Here are some facts they shared:

"Chewing Trident sugar free gum for 20 minutes after a meal can help fight cavities.

Xylitol, a sugar free sweetener in Trident, has been shown to loosen plaque."

For more information:


Visit Trident on Facebook and click our ‘Chew 4 Smiles’ tab
Visit the website
Check out the latest Trident commercials on YouTube
Get some Trident Gum Coupons


My husband always purchases Trident by the case at our local warehouse club.  Thanks to Trident and Twittermoms I know that this isn't just a treat that satisfies our sweet tooth but a treat that is good for our oral hygiene.  I can tell you that we love the White variety of Trident and I am convinced it really works.  I am an avid coffee and tea drinker but Trident actually keeps my teeth white.  We always have a pack in our car, my purse at home.  We have Trident stashed everywhere!  I can say that I'm disheartened that they no longer allow gum chewing at my daughter's school as it is perfect for after lunch since there is no time to brush at school.  I will provide the school with the benefits of gum chewing when brushing isn't an option and see if they will review their policy.  Trident's website offers abundant information to advocate for gum chewing.

“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Trident blogging program, making me eligible to get a $25 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

Tips and Recipes for Flavorful Low-sodium Family Meals

I know I've said this before but I love Twittermoms.  They are teaming up this time with Mrs. Dash and asking that we tweet about flavorful low-sodium meals.  Low sodium meals are very important to me since there is a family history of high blood pressure in my family.  I want to lower the sodium in our meals without sacrificing taste and Mrs Dash helps to do that.

I have a pretty generic quiche recipe and it is a perfect example of something I can use Mrs. Dash in depending on the other ingredients that I am using.
Recipe:
Ingredients:
  • 1- Deep dish frozen pie crust
  • 1-12oz can Evaporated Milk
  • 8oz Shredded Cheese of your choice ( I prefer the mixed blends)
  • 2tbs All purpose flour
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup of your favorite vegetable
  • 1/2 cup of another vegetable or meat
  • Season to taste with your favorite Mrs. Dash Blend
1Can 12 oz Evaporated milk
3egs
2tbs all purpose flour
Seasoning of choice-Mrs Dash Original is perfect for this one.
Wisk in bowl together
You will need to line a deep dish pie crust with 4cups cheese.  Then start layering your ingredients.  Tonight we chose turkey, broccoli and onions.  Cover with 4 cups of cheese then pour egg mixture over it and bake 45min at 350 until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean.

With Summer in full swing and all the fresh vegetables coming in now consider trying Mrs. Dash on them instead of salt.  One of my mother's favorites is home grown green beans seasoned with the original Mrs. Dash.

Are you using those fresh vegetables in a Salad?  Forget the salt, spice things up with Mrs. Dash.  Making Pasta Salad?  Why not use Mrs. Dash Italian Medley?
I love this recipe b/c the options are endless.  Imagine a bacon tomatoe quicke with Mrs. Dash Tomatoe Basil Garlic blend.  Better yet a ham and cheese with Mrs. Dash Onion and Herb.  The possibilities are endless.

Mrs Dash also has an Extra Spicy Seasoning for those who like a little bit of kick with their food.  The possiblilities are just endless.

I bet you won't even miss the salt!  My family doesn't.

Visit the Mrs. Dash site for recipes to help you reduce your family's sodium intake.  Be sure to check out http://www.mrsdash.com/ .  I have been a Mrs. Dash email subscriber for several yrs now and love the monthly newsletter which is full of tips and recipes.  For those followers who love contests like I do, Mrs Dash also holds great online contest from time to time so stay in the know by signing up for their newsletter.

“I wrote this blog post while participating in the Mrs. Dash and TwitterMoms blogging program for a chance to get a $50 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here (make sure to link to: http://mrsdash.twittermoms.com/about)"

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Webkinz fans~ Excellent Deal on Webkinz Series 1 Trading Cards

Amazon.com currently has 2 very similar offers that are a GREAT price for Webkinz Series 1 Trading cards.  36pks of trading cards are available in each box making them an EXCELLENT gift idea for party favors, stockings, chore rewards etc!  These are also both eligible for Free Super Saver Shipping but are just shy of $25.  You can search for filler items but you also might try one of these.

I had another item to order but if you are stuck without a filler item to take advantage of free super saver shipping, you may consider :
Books for Filler Items Most are listed for $1.50 and include sticker books. These also qualify for the current for our 4-for-3 promotion.
Happy Shopping!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Please welcome Fun Smart!

Some of you may have noticed a new blog listed under my profile.  My tween has started her own blog giving reviews and posts from a tween perspective.  Please check it out and follow if you haven't already done so.  Welcome aboard Fun Smart!  http://funsmartreviews.blogspot.com/

Saturday, August 14, 2010

ZoomPanel

There are several sites that advertise rewards in exchange for completing surveys.  Some of the sites get tons of information from you then tell you that you don't qualify so they won't have to reward you.  That is NOT the case with Zoompanel.  If you do not qualify for a particular survey you still get 5 zoom points for your account.  I like Zoompanel for a few reasons: they are legit, surveys are quick and easy, there is a good variety of rewards available, they don't spam and zoom points do not expire!  If you are not a member of Zoompanel, consider signing up today.  I would love for you to tell them StuffSmart sent you by clicking here to sign up.
With the holidays around the corner this would be a great way to save money by earning gifts!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Tips for getting your kids ready to go back to school

Twittermoms and Harper Collins Books challenged members to blog about "tips for getting your kids ready to go back to school".  I jumped at the opportunity since we LOVE Twittermoms & Harper Collins Books.

StuffSmart's Ten tips for getting your kids ready to go back to school
  1. Keep reading through the summer.  Many retailers and local libraries offer summer reading programs.
  2. Sneek in educational games to keep math, history and other subjects fresh in your child's mind.
  3. Have you child make a memory box of the past school years' work and accomplishments.  This can be fun and serve as a review.
  4. Check the school website and make sure to keep up with school supply lists, dress codes etc.
  5. Involve your child in gathering supplies for back to school.
  6. Make sure to fit your child's backpack and stock it with needed supplies.
  7. Designate a place for your child's coat, backpack etc so there is no searching when the first day of school gets here or for the entire school year.
  8. Go through clothing and decide what is needed to shop for school clothes meeting the dress code requirements.
  9. Purchase needed supplies (see previous post)
  10. Get your child back on schedule a few wks before school starts by resuming school bedtime, wake for school and eating breakfast/lunch at times that will be followed during the school year.
A little about Harper Collins from Twittermoms website:

About HarperCollins Children's Books:


HarperCollins Children’s Books is one of the leading publishers of children’s books. Respected worldwide for its tradition of publishing quality books for children, HarperCollins is home to many of the classics of children's literature, including Goodnight Moon, Where the Wild Things Are, The Giving Tree, Charlotte's Web, Ramona, Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse, the I Can Read! beginning reader series and countless award-winning titles. HarperCollins Children's Books is a division of HarperCollins Publishers, one of the leading English-language publishers in the world. Visit HarperCollins Children's Books at http://www.harpercollinschildrens.com/

“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms blogging program to be eligible to get a HarperCollins book set. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

10 tips for saving money during the back-to-school season

Staples and TwitterMoms have challenged me to list 10 tips for saving money during the back-to-school season.

  1. Utilize after season sales to buy for the next yr.
  2. Take advantage from Loss Leader specials.  Many stores have .05 deals!
  3. If your state offers a tax free holiday consider making purchases then.
  4. Make clothing purchases in moderation.  Children grow quickly so don't blow the budget for a new back to school wardrobe all at once.
  5. Use what you have.  Many of us buy in bulk.  If your school asks for paper products etc.  Share your stock.
  6. Take advantage of your fellow bloggers to make sure you are in the know about sales.  Same goes for yourself.  Post those deals!
  7. Re-use.  Invest in a good quality backpack and reuseable lunch system that will travel with your child through the grades.
  8. Plan to pack your child's lunch.
  9. Consider hosting clothing swaps, garage sales, craig's list etc for savings on clothing.
  10. Don't overbuy.  This may sound silly but sometimes we can get excited and try to buy everything.  Stick to your child's school classroom list.
“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Staples blogging program, making me eligible to get a $50 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

Thursday, July 29, 2010

NEW reinvented Dove® Hair Care

As some of you may know I am a member of  Bzzagent a Word of Mouth advertising source where I am sent products to try in exchange for "bzzing" or telling others about my experience.  The most recent product I received was Dove's New Reinvented Hair Care Daily Intensive Treatment Conditioner.  We are a Dove family but for some reason I have never tried their haircare products.  I will say I was a little reluctant when I read the words "IntensiveTreatment".  Those words make me think heavy and greasy.  Dove Intensive Treatment Daily Repair was not heavy or greasy at all!  It has a light and pleasant smell and is very easy to use.  You just shampoo/rinse then add conditioner and leave on for 1minute and rinse.  It rinses completely and left my hair feeling healthy.  I will definitely continue to use it when I need conditioner.



Of course my favorite online shopping source, Amazon.com, has Dove products.  You can pick up a 3pk of 8oz bottles for $18.94 without leaving your home!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Tips for Ensuring a Healthy, Safe and Successful School Year

It seems that the school year just ended yet the start of a new school year is quickly approaching.  Twittermoms and Airwear challenged me to share tips for ensuring a healthy, safe and successful school year.

  1. Make sure your child has had their needed physicals including eye exam.
  2. Make sure that your child has stayed active during the summer so they will be ready for gym, sports etc.
  3. Keep your child reading and involved in learning activities over the summer.
  4. I like to send healthy lunches so I am always looking for new ideas via the internet and my fellow bloggers to keep lunch fun.
  5. Use reuseable lunch containers that are safety approved for your child's health and to be environmentally responsible.
  6. Send a bottle of hand sanitizer with your child in their backpack and or lunch box.
  7. Encourage hand washing to avoid the viruses that run wild in schools.
  8. Make sure your child has the materials needed for school.  We try to restock paper, check pencils etc.  weekly.
  9. Maintain active communication with your child's teacher.  This benefits everyone.
  10. My favorite tip is:  Always prepare the night before by making sure backpacks are ready, clothes (incl. shoes) are laid out, all forms are signed etc.  It makes the mornings run much smoother.
Hopefully, these tips will help you have a healthy, safe and successful school year.  I look forward to hearing your tips as well.
Be sure to participate in Airwear’s essay contest at http://www.lightersafergreener.com/. One grand prize winner will be awarded $1,000, while 10 first prize winners will receive vouchers for Airwear lenses valued up to $400.

*“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Airwear blogging program, making me eligible to get a $25 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, visit http://airwear.twittermoms.com/about."

Monday, July 19, 2010

Garage Sale Advice?

I am very inexperienced in the area of having a garage sale as I'm not one to easily part with things but when I do, usually donate to various charities.  I have undertaken a massive entire house cleaning project and am in a pinch time wise to host a garage sale to try to make a little cash from the treasures I am parting with.  I would appreciate any advice you may have.  I have been told Craigs List and local newspapers are great ways to advertise.  Any other ideas?  Any tips, tricks?  The last garage sale I had was advertised by the subdivision as a community garage sale and I had less than a dozen customers and was told only a handful in the neighborhood participated. 
BTW: I have already made plans to donate the remainder of items to local charities after the garage sale.

Enjoying Summer

I apologize for the lack of posting lately.  I have had a ton going on this summer some of which I will share with you when the time is right.  I do hope my readers are taking time to enjoy the summer.  Thanks for following my blogging journey.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

My Pretty Pink Box ~ Winner!

The winner is...

 


Congratulations! smartshopper2/@pellotposy!  Please look for an email from me.  Thank you to MyPrettyPinkBox.com for the giveaway and to all of those who entered.  Keep following more exciting giveaways will be coming your way.


Saturday, June 19, 2010

My Pretty Pink Box ~ Giveaway~Closed

Are you looking for a creative way to market directly to consumers? Why not put your items right into their hands through My Pretty Pink Box? If you're an online business related to beauty (or fashion), you would be perfect for My Pretty Pink Box.

MyPrettyPinkBox.com is offering a $2 coupon for StuffSmart readers. Just enter StuffSmart at checkout for $2 off June's box. Expires 6/25 or when boxes are sold out.  See what type of surprises you might find in June's Box by watching this short video.



MyPrettyPinkBox is a great way to promote your beauty or fashion products as well as a great way for consumers to try new products making it a win/win for businesses and consumers.  MyPrettyPinkBox.com is offering a giveaway, one lucky StuffSmart reader will win a June 2010 MyPrettyPinkBox.  Contest is open to US and Canadian residents.  Contest ends Saturday June 26, 2010 midnight CST.  Winner will be notified by email so make sure your email address is in your profile or comment.

Main entry(required): Visit MyPrettyPinkBox.com and leave a comment telling me a company that has used MyPrettyPinkBox to market their products.  Please try to leave a company that hasn't already been named by other readers.
Extra Entries (optional):  Must leave a comment for each optional entry completed.
1. Follow StuffSmart via Google Friend connect.  If you are already a follower, just leave a comment saying so.
2. Follow @StuffSmart on twitter and leave your twitter username in the comment.  You may tweet the following up to 2x daily.  Please leave a link to your tweet in your comment :
" MyPrettyPinkBox.com is a great way to promote your #beauty/#fashion products. Enter to #win a box here: http://bit.ly/9sOKfs @StuffSmart"

"MyPrettyPinkBox.com #beauty/#fashion products #giveaway. Enter to #win a box here: http://bit.ly/9sOKfs @StuffSmart"
3. Sign up for MyPrettyPinkBox.com's newsletter here.
4. Follow @LindaGranillo(mypretttypinkbox.com) on twitter and leave your twitter user name in the comment.
5.Purchase a MyPrettyPinkBox June 2010 using the code StuffSmart and give yourself 5 extra comments/entries.

*Disclaimer.  Information in this post was provided by MyPrettyPinkBox.com.  I was offered a giveaway for my readers and a box for myself once the contest is complete.  I am not affiliated with MyPrettyPinkBox.com.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

One EskimO Review

As a member of One2One Network I was given the opportunity to review the cd One eskimO by One eskimO.  I hadn't heard of the group or the albumn so I wasn't sure what to expect.  I have added the video for their first single released from this album "Kandi".  The entire album has a pleasant mellow sound.  I would compare their style to Dave Matthews, JohnMayer and the like.  I would say that this is an excellent album to put on and sit down to at the end of the day and relax although it is also a great album for the car.  Listen for yourself.  I would love to hear your thoughts on "Kandi".
Please check out the One EskimO website here.  Follow One eskimO on  Facebook.  One eskimO's You Tube  page.  One eskimO is also available through Amazon by clicking One eskimO.
Band is on tour May/June/July supporting Michael Franti and in addition to festivals and headlining shows

Tour Dates
May 14 Miami, FL Fillmore
May 15 Jacksonville, FL Free Bird Live
May 18 Orlando, FL House of Blues
May 19 Tampa, FL The Ritz Ybor
May 22 Raleigh, NC Lincoln Theatre
May 24 Asheville, NC The Orange Peel
May 25 Charleston, SC The Music Farm
Jun 01 Toronto, ON The Guvernment
Jun 03 New York, NY The Beach at Governor’s Island
Jun 04 Boston, MA House of Blues
Jun 05 Essex Junction, VT Camplain Valley Expo
Jun 06 Hunter, NY Mountain Jam Festival
Jun 08 Royal Oak, MI Royal Oak Music Thtr
Jun 09 Grand Rapids, MI Orbit Room
Jun 12 Memphis, TN Minglewood Hall
Jun 13 Kansas City, MO Crossroads
Aug 14 Denver, CO Mile High Festival
*Disclosure I was offered a copy of One eskimO for review and entered in a One2One drawing for my participation. The opinions are my own.

Hurry~ Awesome Deal on Club Penguin DS Collector's Edition~ Expired

I don't know how long this GREAT deal will last.  Amazon has the Club Penguin: Elite Force Collector's Edition which includes a club penguin stylus, DS skin and coin card.  This game usually sells for $29.99!  I've been watching since Christmas for it to go down.  Just click the link to the left and take advantage of this deal while they last!


UPDATE:  I just checked and this item has gone back up to $28.  I hope some of you got to take advantage of this excellent deal.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day 2010

Photobucket

Thank you to all the families and soldiers that have given so much so that we may have freedom.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Five Fun Family Vacation Activities Your Kids Will Love

Williamsburg Tourism and TwitterMoms asked bloggers to post "Five Fun Family Vacation Activities Your Kid's Will Love".

  1. Staycations are so popular due to the economy.  If you can't afford to travel consider purchasing a yearly zoo membership.  We have done this in the past and it has been a wonderful investment.  Keep in mind that your zoo usually brings in seasonal exhibits so make sure to hit them all!
  2. Disney~ Ok not the most economical choice but the smile on your child's face will be worth it.  You can do a lot of research online ahead of time to find tips to cut your costs. 
  3. Utilize State and Local Parks.  We are fortunate enough to live close to The Great Smoke Mountains.  Kids love being outdoors.  Make it an extra fun adventure by hiking and taking along things like magnifying glasses and bug catchers.
  4. The Beach.  The beach can be a great place to vacation for children.  Give them sand toys and they  can play all day.  Remember the simplest activities can spark imagination and fun.
  5. Historical Sites~ For older children you may want to visit historical locations like Williamsburg, Washington, D.C., Montecello.  Check with your child's teacher and see what they will be studying next yr and visit a related vacation and your child will be ahead!  Even if you can't afford to make it to one of these locations, check out their websites and you can find all kinds of fun information to create your own virtual vacation at home.  Be Creative and Have Fun!
Per TwitterMoms:

About Williamsburg Tourism

The Williamsburg area – Williamsburg, Jamestown and Yorktown, VA – is one of America’s favorite family destinations, with adventure around every corner. Experience more than 400 years of American history and culture brought vividly to life at hands-on historical sites and world-class museums; share thrills and entertainment at exhilarating theme parks; discover unique finds and bargains, and enjoy outdoor activities in scenic parks, byways, nature trails and waterways. Whether it’s traveling backing to the 17th and 18th centuries, or forward into the 21st, the Williamsburg area offers vacation fun for all ages. http://www.visitwilliamsburg.com/


Disclaimer: “I wrote this blog post while participating in the Williamsburg Tourism and TwitterMoms blogging program for a chance to get a $50 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

Ten Tips for Being Fashionable on a Budget

I was challenged by Twittermoms and GAP to share ten tips for being fashionable on a budget.  You can read more about the challenge here:  Twittermoms.com

I have always been a frugal shopper so I was interested in participating to share my tips as well as see what other Twittermoms had to say as well.

Tips:
  1. Purchase classic pieces.  Stay away from the super trendy one season only styles.
  2. Collect you wardrobe and consider pieces that you have at home when purchases new items:  for example did you find a nice colorful blouse to dressup your classic black suit, skirt or pants.
  3. Add accessories.  As a busy mom it isn't always easy but grabbing a colorful necklace. bracelet or set of earrings can change up and outfit without spending money.
  4. Do you have a scarf that you can add to your outfit?  I always received scarves as gifts but didn't wear them.  Now that I have learned some tricks to using scarves I've found they can change the look of an outfit.
  5. Shoes.  Changing up you shoes can make a huge difference in the luck of some dresses and pants.  Especially in the summer.  Cute dressy flip flops can really make that Sunday dress ok for everday wear.
  6. A trend that I've been hearing about but haven't been able to participate in yet is fashion parties where you get together and take items from your wardrobe that you are tired of.  Each participant can try on and mix and match outfits to come home with a new to them outfit for free!
  7. Don't be afraid to register clothing before your birthday or holidays.  Many stores now allow gift registries for Christmas, Birthdays and other special events.  This is a great way to make sure that you get a gift that you want and to save your budget.
  8. Layering-  Layering existing pieces can also change up your wardrobe for no $ at all.
  9. Handbag- Yes,a change in your handbag can help change  up the look of an outfit as well.  To help your budget stick again with classic styles and colors.  Purses are another item you might want to consider swapping with friends .
  10. Last but not least- Shop sales!  Try to put away a clothing budget and save for seasonal sales.  A lot of States offer Tax Free wkends around the time school starts and the stores will also run sales to draw you in.  Combining both can make for significant savings.  Holiday shopping can be helpful too.  Don't be afraid to shop the clearance racks or buy at the end of a season for next yr.  If you are buying classic pieces you will look fashionable and put together.
I hope some of these tips get you to thinking about being fashionable on a budget.  I would love to hear some of your ideas as well.

Disclaimer: "I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Gap Outlet blogging program to be eligible to win a $20 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.” http://www.twittermoms.com/forum/topics/share-10-tips-for-being

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Attn: Sinus/Allergy sufferers-> NeilMed Offering Free Neti Pot for New Facebook Fans While Supplies Last~Expired



If you are a member of Facebook and an allergy sufferer you may want to hurry to NeilMed on Facebook (click highlighted link) ,  While they last they are offering a free Neti Pot with 2 saline packs.  Limit 1 per address while they last.
 What is a Neti Pot?  It looks like a tea pot but it is a natural way to rinse your sinuses.  Check out the how to videos on their site.  If you suffer from allergies like I do you are probably like me and would try anything for relief.  I have use the NeilMed Nasal Saline rinse bottle and felt it offered some relief so look forward to trying this product.
Search Amazon.com for NeilMed Neti pot

UPDATE 5/20:  It looks like this offer has come to an end but NeilMed is offering a $3 off coupon on their FB page.  I would encourage you to check their site regularly as they often post internet printable coupons.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Protect-A-Bed Winner!

Congratulations to Beeb~ Winner of the Queen Sized Premium Protect-A-Bed Premium Mattress Cover (Retail Value $79.99).
Congrats
A big thanks to Global Influence  for coordinating the giveaway campaign!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

10 Little Things that Lead to a Happier, Healthier You

I am a member of Twitter Moms and enjoy participating in their blog challenges to write posts such as these.  This one is sponsored by Tropicana Juicy Rewards program. You can learn more about this opportunity at Twittermoms.com.


1. The first and most important for me is to walk with God daily either through prayer, reading or discussing his word with others.
2. Plan ahead.  You'll be much happier b/c things will go much smoother.
3. Take "Me Time"  whether it's a bubble bath, reading a book etc.
4. Take time to play.  PLAY?  Yes.  If you have children take time to play.  You'll be surprised how much happier you will be and you will be making important memories with your children.
5. Plan and eat healthy.  This is my biggest challenge but it helps to share your journey with friends and you can be accountability partners to try to stay on track.
6. Be active.  Ok those who know me are probably laughing at this one.  This is another one an accountability partner does wonders to keep me motivated.
7. Don't sweat the small stuff.  Take a moment to ask yourself will this really matter a yr. from now.  If not it's not worth the sweat.
8. Surround yourself with family and friend.
9. Find a hobby that you can take pride in and share interest with others through classes etc.
10.  Make sure to keep up with physicals and checkups with you physician.  Prevention is Key to being healthy.

Tropicana recently kicked off a rewards program.  You may sign up here: Tropicana Juicy Rewards.   Special Code: TWMOM-READR (worth up to 1 reward point or up to $5 in savings). Per Twittermoms and Tropicana: "This one-time use code is valid for new accounts ONLY. Must be entered within 6 hours of creating your account. Limit one new account bonus code per new account. All accounts must be created and all codes entered by May 7, 2010 at 11:59 PM EST.” 



Trop50 Little Things for Happy, Healthy Living
1000 Little Things for Moms from Trop50



Taken from the Twittermom.com Tropicana post:     
More About Trop50 and Juicy Rewards



Tropicana Trop50 provides the goodness of juice with 50 percent less calories and sugars, and no artificial sweeteners. Trop50 is a part of Tropicana’s Juicy Rewards program, which gives consumers more from their juice by offering 20,000 ways to save on fun, healthy pursuits. With Juicy Rewards, the savings come easily – up to $15 for one carton of Tropicana Pure Premium and up to $30 in savings for one carton of Trop50!

It takes just three simple steps to participate and save with Juicy Rewards:

1. Buy Tropicana, find the unique code on the package – either under the cap or on the back of specially marked Tropicana Pure Premium and Trop50 products.

2. Register at Tropicana.com, enter the codes to get points.

3. Redeem points for incredible savings on healthy fun.
Trop50 Offerings

Tropicana Trop50® introduces two new flavors – Pomegranate Blueberry and Pineapple Mango – expanding its innovative line of juice beverages. At 50 calories, each eight-ounce glass squeezes in a full day’s supply of vitamin C and 10 percent of the daily recommended value of antioxidant vitamin E. Pineapple Mango also is a good source of potassium! TheTrop50 line also includes orange juice beverage varieties: Pulp Free, Some Pulp and Pulp Free Calcium & Vitamin D, which provides 35 percent daily value of calcium & 25 percent daily value of Vitamin D – an excellent source of both nutrients.
 
 I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Tropicana Trop50 blogging program to be eligible to win 6 free Juicy Rewards points and a $30 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here

Friday, April 23, 2010

Digital Book Survey

Digital Book Survey



If you are interested in supplying input for a Digital World for children that is Biblically Based Thomas Nelson would like your ideas. Their survey is fairly brief and allows you to be specific about features you would like/dislike about a digital world for kids.  Click the link above to provide your input.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Happy Earth Day!


I hope that my readers stopped and looked at their carbon footprint today.  Earth Day is a good reminder that there are so many things that we can do to take care of our environment.  I hope that we are all trained to think: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.  Please make Earth Day Every Day!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Don't forget to try your luck by entering the Protect-A-Bed mattress pad Giveaway posted earlier this week.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Another Great Movie at a Great Price

We saw the Kit Kittredge: An American Girl (2008) Movie in the theaters and could not wait to purchase it on DVD when it was releases.  Really.  My daughter is 10 and I think that is the perfect age for this movie.  This particular movie takes place during the great depression which I thought was perfect timing considering the current economic situation of our country.  It was great to see my daughter's reaction to how much things have changed since then.  The Movie is rated G and a great family movie.  Amazon.com currently has this movie on DVD at an excellent price!  The DVD is currently $6.49 and Blu-Ray $9.99.  This would make a great gift for a tween in your life.  To make it easy I have included the link to Amazon.  Just click and buy and I hope you enjoy this movie as much as we did.  If you have seen the movie feel free to share your comments.