Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Entering the Zanussi Cookers Make Every Meal a Masterpiece Competition on Contest Corner

This is my entry for the Zanussi cookers make every meal a masterpiece competition

One way to make every meal count is with a great start!  Salads are easy even for those of use who aren't experienced cooks and can make a "so so" meal into a "WOW" meal.  The other thing about salad is that you can throw in various ingredients to change things up and keep it interesting.  This is one of our favorite meal starters.


  • Baby Spinach
  • Shredded Cheese (we prefer the mixed blends)
  • Mandarin Orange slices (Canned oranges may be drained and used)
  • Almond Slices (great for protein!)
  • Drizzle with Raspberry Vinaigrette Dressing.
I love how this salad has it all: Vegetable, Fruit, Dairy, and Protein!

Too busy for a home cooked meal? Ordering out?  Pizza?  A meal from a box?  Add a salad like the one above and viola you've made a not so healthy meal much healthier and well...a masterpiece!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Bring Back Beatrice! by Jennifer Griffin ~ Book Review

Bring Back Beatrice! 1,108 Baby Names with Meaning, Character and a Little Bit of Attitude. By Jennifer Griffin is a great read for anyone thinking of having children.  Naming your child is an important and sometimes stressful task since their name will stick with them throughout life.  When we found out that we were having a baby I will be honest.  I didn't consult any of the hundreds of "baby names" books out there.  My husband and I had come up with a girl name several yrs before and a couple of possible boy names as we never could come up with a boy name that we just loved.  When our bundle of joy arrived she fit perfectly with the name we had in mind and we breathed a sigh of relief that we didn't have to make a decision on a boy name.
Bring Back Beatrice!  Is a book that I would have loved to have around when we were discussing baby names.  The author beautifully spells out her purpose of writing the book and her endeavor to save children from being named fad or made up names.  Does she really expect everyone to name their daughters Beatrice?  No.  The author simply wants thought to be put into the names we are giving our children and the history of those names.  What if you have your mind set on a fad name?  The author lists alternatives to the name and provides history behind the name.
I'm not in the market for baby names but found the book very refreshing and think it would be a great resource for anyone.  How many times have you cringed when you heard the name someone was planning to name their child?  Do the child a favor and let the expectant parents know about this book and that it provides a refreshing new option to the old baby names books.  The child just might thank you!  This would also make a great shower gift.

* Disclosure: I was provided a free copy of the book for review purposes.  No compensation was received.  This post is my own honest opinion and was in no way influenced by the sponsor.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Hot on Amazon! Haan FS20 Plus Steam Cleaning Floor Sanitizer (Steam Mop) with Deluxe Sanitizing Tray $25.84 Shipped! (tax may be added in some states)

Hurry over to for a seriously HOT deal!

Hurry to for the Haan FS20 Plus Steam Cleaning Floor Sanitizer with Deluxe Sanitizing Tray by Haan for $18.56.  This offer is through Ace Hardware Direct so it doesn't qualify for Free Super Saver shipping.  However with the $7.28 shipping making it $25.84 this is by far the best price that I could find on this unit new (not refurbished) as it lists for $99.99

Product Features

  • Chemical-free steam cleaner for all sealed hard-floor surfaces--uses regular tap water
  • Plus version comes with sanitizing tray attachment for refreshing carpeted areas
  • Heats up in less than 3 minutes; produces up to 20 minutes of steam per refill
  • Includes 2 super-absorbent, multilayer Ultra-Microfiber cleaning pads that are washable and reusable
  • Measures 50-1/2 by 11-1/2 by 7-1/2 inches (HxWxD) fully extended and weighs 3.15 pounds; backed by 1-year warranty

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Enter To Win $100 Amazon Email Gift Card- End Of The Year Giveaway

StuffSmart, One Moment in Time, Bits and Bobs, Ann Crabs, The Organic Blonde and 6 other super mom bloggers teamed up to bring this awesome $100 Amazon gift card giveaway to you all. The year is coming to an end, and the only way to show appreciation to each of you is by hosting this awesome giveaway. Each of the bloggers hosting this giveaway has an amazing site. Visit them as you enter this giveaway and i bet you won't want to leave so soon. This giveaway is open worldwide. If this is your first time of entering giveaway with Rafflecopter, all you need to do is to click on instructions and do what you are asked to do, then click I DID THIS..Jump to the next option

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Freschetta Proud to Support Pink Program and Giveaway

In support of October being National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Freschetta has launched their "Proud to Support Pink" program. From Sept 25 - Oct. 31, 2011 you can purchase specially marked packages of Freschetta pizza and Artisan Pizza Crusts and help them to reach their goal of a $50,000 donation to the Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. The specially marked packages have codes to be entered at Freschetta will donate $1 for each code entered up to $50,000. You can learn more about this exciting program at or on the Freschetta facebook page: To spread the word about the Freschetta Proud to Support Pink program, Freschetta is offering a giveaway.

*Disclosure- As a member of the Freschetta Fresh Connection Team I was given a prize pack like the one offered for the giveaway.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Giveaway: $25 Visa Card through Ann-Crabs

Ann Crabs is currently offering a great giveaway in conjunction with Essilor. You may read more about them in her post here: Ann-Crabs 

Thanks to rafflecopter you may enter here giveaway below.  (The Rafflecopter is the same for both sites so please only enter on one site to avoid disqualification).

See rule below on rafflecopter post.

If you don't already follow Ann's blog you definitely will want to for more exciting posts and giveaways!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

HOT Offer! All You Magazine 6 month subscription for $6! Think Coupons!

Thank you All You and for easing our pockets a little in time for the Thanksgiving and Christmas Holidays!
All You Magazine is well known in the couponing world for their great monthly coupons.  Today until October 25, 2011 you can get a 6 month subscription, which is one issue per month for only $6 on I'm thinking that this will make a great gift for the coupon shoppers on my Christmas list!  Don't miss out!  Only $1 per issue!  Get this special offer here:

*Notice the picture above.  It is the October 2011 edition and boasts having $61.40 in coupons inside! Not too bad for $1.
If you read about this tremendous offer here first please be polite and give a shout out with a link back.  Thank you.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

KCWC Blog Tour --- Surrendered Sleep Blog Tour — September 19-23

Post by: Kathy Carlton Willis Communications

Surrendered Sleep
A Biblical Perspective
Dr. Charles W. Page
Publisher: Camino Real Pub.
ISBN-10: 9-780-983-138105ISBN-13: 978-0-9831381-0-5 รข€¨Release Date: 9/15/2011
Paperback: 189 pages
Retail: $14.95

Book Summary

(Nacogdoches, TX) Sleep Clinics. Sleeping Pills. Sleep Systems. With all the focus on sleep, it’s obvious to anyone breathing (or not—in the case of sleep apnea) that sleep disorders are on everyone’s minds. Can’t fall asleep. Can’t stay asleep. So many problems, but so few zzzs.
Dr. Charles W. Page has been plagued with sleep deprivation his entire adult life. Whether from the rigorous unpredictable lifestyle of a general surgeon or dealing with obstructive sleep apnea, Dr. Page sees sleep as a precious commodity. Many of his surgical patients also report sleep problems on their medical histories. It’s certainly a widespread problem.
Although there is extensive medical literature regarding sleep, insomnia and sleep disorders, there is little instruction about these issues from a Christian worldview. Sleep was God’s idea—why shouldn’t we go to the One who created rest in the first place for answers to our sleep problems. One of the reasons Dr. Page wrote Surrendered Sleep was to heighten people’s awareness of the spiritual side of sleep issues, which often goes neglected in health and medical literature.
(chapter 17 from Surrendered Sleep)
Balin jam (“may you pass your night in peace”)—it’s how the Fulani people of western Africa say goodbye. This Fulani expression best captures the message of Surrendered Sleep. Passing your night in peace, from a biblical perspective, involves a whole lot more than sleeping well. It encompasses surrendering every aspect of sleep to God. The prerequisite for having peace as we lay down to sleep is a growing, vibrant relationship with God. Everything in our lives, including sleep, flows out of our pursuit of our loving Father in Heaven. The ability to sleep is a multifaceted gift given by God, who likewise pursues a love relationship with every individual on this planet.... MORE
Author Bio
Dr. Charles W. Page is a sleep-deprived surgeon. He completed medical school and residency at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas and serves as surgeon in rural Texas. Dr. Page is a fellow of the American College of Surgeons and the Christian Medical and Dental Association. In addition to his involvement in the teaching ministry of his local church, he has participated in medical mission trips to Cameroon, Pakistan, Milawe, Nigeria, Mexico, Honduras and Nicaragua. He and his wife Joanna live in Texas with their five children.
Please Leave a comment related to this post below for a chance to win the Grand Prize.  Names will be submitted to KCWC from all blogs involved in the blog tour and one grand prize winner will be randomly chosen by KCWC September 30, 2011.
$69.35 Value

Grand Prize Giveaway:
  • Surrendered Sleep Products
    • Surrendered Sleep - Book
    • Surrendered Sleep - 8-Volume DVD Series
    • Sleep Songs - CD of music from Fletch Wiley
  • SLEEP - Lavender Vanilla Aromatherapy from Bath & BodyWorks
    • Pillow Mist (4 oz)
    • Body Wash & Foam Bath (2 oz)
    • Lotion (2 oz)
    • Candle (1.6 oz)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011's Video game of the day will help you get fit while having fun on the Nintendo Wii or Xbox 360 kinect thanks to Zumba

Have you joined the latest home video game fitness craze Zumba?  If not today is featuring the game for nintendo wii and xbox360 kinect at Gold Box prices so it would be a great time to try them out!

Go to for special pricing information.
Pricing for the Wii Version:
List Price: $39.99 Price:$25.00 You Save:$14.99 (37%)
Pricing for the Xbox 360 Kinect version:
List Price:$49.99 Price:$31.25 You Save:$18.74 (37%)
Both Ship for free via Free Super Saver Shipping.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Books to the Rescue' Apple iPad 2 Giveaway

I was so excited to work with Shana at  The Writer's Lair Books again and to promote this fabulous giveaway in order to promote reading and to be able to donate a book to our local school library.  Many of you may remember my review of The Flightless Goose a while back which is a fabulous book published by The Writer's Lair Books. I have always loved to read and have felt that reading is an essential part of childhood.  My daughter inherited my love of books multiplied many times over.  She was always a child that preferred books to toys.  People were amazed that even as a toddler she would bring you book after book to read and listen for as long as you would read to her.  When she learned how to read she was unstoppable!  She read everything from billboards, food packages, even her grandparents senior citizens magazines!  I love to see children reading and to encourage their love of books.  While I know most of you won't read past "ipad 2 giveaway" I hope that I'm wrong and the true message to promote literacy is heard.
'Books to the Rescue' iPad 2 Giveaway.
This giveaway is so fabulous and extrememly important. Why?

Because each blogger that is participating in this giveaway is donating a book to either a school, library, or youth organization.

Flightless Goose by Eric D. Goodman and Red Rain by Tim Wendel are two fantastic books that are appropriate for elementary and high school aged students respectively. I was so excited that so many bloggers wanted to be a part of this idea. Over 30 bloggers are participating in this event! Their fabulous blogs are listed below. AND one lucky person will win an Apple iPad 2! What do you have to do to get that? Well, it’s simple and easy to do. Below is our Rafflecopter entry form. In bold are the mandatory entries you have to complete in order to enter this giveaway. There are thirty-one (it's really not that many). You just go down the list and 'like' each Facebook page. You must like the facebook pages with your PERSONAL profile in order for your entry to be counted. You will click on “Click Here” and it will reveal a link. You must do them all to have officially entered the giveaway. You will earn 31 entries. It’s so easy (and fast). Below the mandatory 31, there are additional actions that you may do to earn extra entries (like bonuses). Some you can do everyday until the giveaway is over. Who doesn’t like extra credit? There is no need to re-enter on each blog. If you enter on one blog it will register on the other 30 blogs participating in this giveaway. You MUST be 18+ to enter. The contest begins at 12:01 a.m. EST, September 12, 2011, and the contest is over 11:59 p.m. EST, September 28, 2011 and is open worldwide. So, you got it? Sure? If you have any questions, you can leave us a reply and we will follow up. So, ON YOUR MARK…GET READY…GET SET…GO!   Our Cool Bloggers: Prowling Books In the Lair /Crazy for Books/voiceBoks /Misadventures with Andi/ The Adventures of J-Man and MillerBug/ Our Family World/ At Home Moma/ Our Way to Learn/ Celebration Ideas Online/ Quality Baskets/ Counting My Kisses/ The Write To Make A Living/ Pawsitive Living/ I Am A Reader, Not A Writer/ Insights By April/ My Devotional Thoughts/ Enjoy Life, Enjoy Now/ChicnSavvy Reviews/Lori's Reading Corner/ 7 On a Shoestring/ Rants~N~Scribbles/ Bubba and Mack/ Simply Stacie/ Makobi Scribe/ Sassy Mama In LA/ Deals 4 Dummies/ Your Child Will Read/ Books Are Wonderful/ Centsible Savings/ Mummy Deals/StuffSmart

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Back to School ... Pray! By Carla McDougal

Back to School ... Pray!
By Carla McDougal 
Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.
Deuteronomy 6:5,7 
Excitement’s in the air! Anticipation rises. It’s that time of year when the kids go back to school.
Who can forget watching your child go to "big school" for the first time? I remember those bittersweet moments as each of my four children kissed me good-bye. I always knew that day would arrive, but nothing prepared me for the moment.
Elementary school seemed to fly by and almost overnight they were in junior high and then high school. And in a blink of an eye, they were off to college. Where did the years go?
I learned early on that when my children were away from home, praying for them comforted me. By turning them over to God I experienced a calm peace. Year after year my prayers intensified, yet remained the same…
  • Elementary School – Will he make a friend? Will he eat all his lunch, or just the cookies and chips? God help him to love You with all his heart.
  • Junior/Senior High –Will he make the right friends? Is he paying attention to the teacher? God, help him love You with all his soul.
  • College - Will he make some forever friends? Is he making the right life decisions? God, help him to love You with all his strength.
Just as our children face challenges, we as moms face our own set of challenges…
  • To pray over our children no matter where they are in life.
  • To be on our knees for those God entrusted to us.
  • To ultimately pray for each child to love Jesus with all his heart, soul, and mind!
  • Finally, to let them know we are praying for them each day! What a blessing it is to pray for our children.
    I ask you to take advantage of this new season too. Do you need a fresh start? Where are you in your relationship with God? In my Bible study, Reflecting Him – Living for Jesus and Loving It, I encourage you to find Jesus in your everyday activities. He is there for us 24 hours a day, and He wants to hear our everyday prayers!
    Author Bio
    CARLA MCDOUGAL is founder of Reflective Life Ministries headquartered in the Houston, Texas area. Her true passion for her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, shines brightly, whether she is speaking or writing. She shares experiences from her own life to encourage women to live every day for Him. God is sending Carla around the world to speak to women from all walks of life—those living in the best of circumstances to those who have hit rock bottom. 
    Carla’s book, Reflecting Him: Living for Jesus and Loving It, is a 10-week study that encourages you to open your eyes to God’s daily life lessons. The more you ask God to be in your life, the more you will recognize His hand on everything you do. For more information on a growing number of products from Reflective Life Ministries, and to see about booking Carla for an event or interview, go

    The above article is loaded at If for some reason you have difficulty copying or downloading the article, we will be glad to email the article in .pdf or .doc format.
    This article content is provided free of charge by the author through Kathy Carlton Willis Communications. You are welcome to place this article on your site or in your publication as long as 1) it’s used in its entirety, 2) the full bio is also used, and 3) you previously request permission through KCWC at
    All other standard copyrights apply.

    Tuesday, August 9, 2011

    Free 1yr Subscription to Martha Stewart Living

    Hurry over to Rewards Gold to take advantage of this fantastic offer.  One free year of Martha Stewart Living Magazine.  I have received magazine subscriptions from Rewards Gold before and like that they do not have an auto renewal feature.  Rewards Gold will ask you a few questions and you answer them in order to take advantage of this reward.  They will also ask for you to share the offer by providing a friend's name and email address.  I can tell you from experience that offers like this don't last long!  Make sure to sign up today.
    Thanks to Ann at Ann Crabs for the heads up on this offer.

    Tuesday, August 2, 2011

    Kashi Free Sample

    Hurry over to Kashi to grab your choice of samples. They are currently offering a choice of Kashi® Cinnamon Harvest® Cereal or Kashi® TLC® Peanutty Dark Chocolate layered granola bar. Of course,  I chose the Dark Chocolate layered granola bar! Gotta love chocolate!  Happy Healthy Snacking!

    Monday, August 1, 2011

    Winner ~ Orient Automatic Watch Giveaway ($135 value) ~ Christmas in July Blog Hop

    Please join me in congratulating:  

    Thank you for all who participated in this giveaway.  Don't forget that you can use the coupon code "stuffsmart50" until 8/31/11 to receive 50% off at Orient Watch USA.

    Stay tuned for more great giveaways here on StuffSmart!

    Saturday, July 30, 2011

    The Night Night Book by Marianne Richmond

    The Night Night Book
    I was given the opportunity to review a sweet little book for bedtime reading.  The Night Night Book by Marianne Richmond is a board book for you to read to your infant and to read with your toddler.  This is a sturdy book and is sized well for toddler's little hands.  In this book we follow a child on their way to bed saying Night Night to things that filled their busy day before finally reaching the bed to lay down to go Night Night.  It is written in a way that helps your child wind down before laying down to sleep.

    The cover is only a sample of the artwork that is contained in this book.  While I would describe the illustrations as bright and entertaining they are also masterfully done in tones that are soothing.

    I would recommend The Night Night Book by Marianne Richmond.  The book is available at most bookstores as well as at  This book also qualifies for Amazon's 4-for- 3 promotion meaning that you can mix it with other promotional items to buy 3 and get a fourth one free!  Books make great gifts for children.  Keep this book in mind when shopping for baby showers, birthdays, Christmas and other Holidays.

    *Disclosure:  I was provided with a copy of The Night Night Book for review.  The review posted is my honest opinion.  I was not compensated for this review.

    Monday, July 25, 2011

    Orient Automatic Watch Giveaway ($135 value) ~ Christmas in July Blog Hop

    Orient Watch is turning 60 years old.  Never heard of them?  Honestly I hadn't either.  They must be the best kept secret in the automatic watch industry.  With nearly 60 yrs in business they produce nearly 2 million pieces worldwide each year.  That's a lot of watches.  Check out their beautiful collection of watches.  They have something for everyone from the dainty to the handsome watches for men.  Visit Orient Watch and check out their exquisite timepieces like their CEM75002D or the CEY04002B.  Thanks to Orient watch StuffSmart readers have the chance to win a beautiful timepiece of their own.  The sponsor is offering one lucky winner their choice of one of the three women's watches below with values up to $135.  As a special bonus StuffSmart Readers can use Coupon Code stuffsmart50 to get 50% off a purchase.  Code expires 8/31/11.

    Rules:  Please play fair and make sure all of the rules are followed.  One entrant per household, ip address etc.  Contest is open to U.S. Residents Only.  Contest opens 9am EST on July 25th and ends at 11:59 pm EST on July 31st.  Winner will be chosen via  Winner will be emailed and have 72 hrs to respond or an alternate winner will be chosen.


    *Mandatory entry (must be done for any extra entries to count):  Follow StuffSmart and FunsmartReviews publicly via Google Friend Connect.  Then leave a comment letting me know that you completed this step.

    Extra entries: Please leave a seperate comment for each that you do.
    1. Visit one of the Orient Watch links above and browse their site.  Come back and leave a comment and link to a watch you like and leave a comment saying why you like it.  (You may do this once daily)
    2. "Like" Orient Watch on facebook.  (In the spirit of supporting your fellow blogger feel free to leave a comment saying you found out about them through StuffSmart's Blog or leaving a comment under the comment I have on their wall.)
    3. "Like" StuffSmart's Blog on facebook.
    4. Follow @StuffSmart on twitter and leave a comment with your twitter handle.
    5. Tweet "@StuffSmart is WatchSmart enter her @OrientWatchUSA #giveaway today! #ChristmasinJuly #watches  May be done 1x daily.

    Make Sure to check out the other #ChristmasInJuly giveaways!

    Monday, July 4, 2011

    Happy 4th of July!

    Thank you doesn't begin to show the appreciation for those who have sacrificed and continue to sacrifice for our freedom.  God Bless.

    Great Deals at Totsy!

    What is Totsy?  Totsy is a savings site that is accessible by invitation only and offers amazing discounts on clothing and products for children and adults.  Products are available while quantities last and only for a short period of time meaning if you find something you better jump on it.  That's exactly what I just did.  I was looking for a great quality lunch box for my daughter and found the MatSack on sale for $11.90 (regular retail $19.95)  Shipping was $7.95.  What made this deal even sweeter was that there is a one time use coupon code valid for $15 off purchases of $16 or more (not incl. tax or shipping).  I was able to order 2 MatSacks for $15.95 using this coupon code instead of $19.45 for one without the code. 

    If you aren't in the market for a lunchbox they also have several great children's clothing deals that would be great to pair with this offer. Don't forget to check out the Paul Frank PJ pants for women that are on sale for $12 each!

    For those of you not members you may use my invitation link to join.  Happy Shopping!  Most of today's deals exp in 11hrs.
    Invitation:  Totsy Invitation
    Discount Code: vipmom

    Sunday, June 19, 2011

    Fun Smart Reviews: Kingdom Tales Book One: Tales of the Kingdom

    Fun Smart Reviews: Kingdom Tales Book One: Tales of the Kingdom: "If you love Christian books that the whole family will enjoy, be sure to read The Kingdom Tales series, by David and Karen Mains. These are..."

    Friday, June 17, 2011

    My Kind of Tea Party

    This tea party has nothing to do with any political movements. This tea party involves two of my favorite things, tea and a good sale. I absolutely love sitting down with a nice cup of tea. I love experimenting with different flavors and learning the benefits of various blends. The upside is that tea is also good for you. It is filled with antioxidants that are beneficial for your health. I like to try different brands, flavors and styles of tea. I use loose teas and bagged teas.

    I first discovered Stash Tea when the Target SuperStore opened in our area. I was checking out the tea isle and of course the sale signs drew my attention to a tea brand that I wasn't familiar with. I picked out a couple of flavors and as the saying goes, the rest is history. Stash Tea comes in a variety of flavors and is available in regular and decaf in most of their blends. One of my favorite blends from Stash is their Chocolate Hazelnut Tea. I add a touch of sugar and creamer to the Chocolate Hazelnut Tea and it is absolutely delicious. It is like dessert in a cup.

    The Tea Party going on now is on The currently have their Stash Tea on sale. You may place a one time order at the sale price or you can choose the subscribe and save option and save an additional 15%. For those you who are not familiar with Amazon's subscribe and save program you may sign up for deliveries every 1,2,3 or 6 months shipping to your home automatically. Shipping is free and the 15% discount continues to be applied. Please note though that the base price of the item may go up or down so you may want to check it before your scheduled shipment. If you change your mind about subscribe and save you may cancel at any time. To manage your subscribe and save account, go to my account. Then click on subscribe and save and you can change the frequency of shipments or cancel all together. That's not all, this offer is even better since you until June 30, 2011 use coupon code STASHT97.  There are several blends available and several flavors.  Currently the Chocolate Hazelnut Decaf is on sale for $15.63 for 6- 18ct boxes (total of 108 tea bags).  If you choose subscribe and save the price is $13.29 (.12 per tea bag).  You may then use the coupon code above for an additional discount increasing your savings.  The Stash Tea site's price on this tea is approx. .18 a bag before shipping and tax.  So overall Amazon is offering a great deal.  Stop by and treat yourself to some tea.  I'd love to hear your feedback on how you like your tea, flavors you recommend etc.


    StuffSmart's Stash Tea on Amazon Link

     * This post is my own.  I have not been compensated in any way.  This post was to share my experience with Stash Tea and a current sale that I became aware of as an affiliate. 
    **Ordering through the links above help support this blog.

    Friday, June 10, 2011

    Here, Home, Hope by author Kaira Rouda ~ Book Review

    I enjoy reading but rarely allow myself enough time to enjoy a good book.  I am so glad that I participated in the One 2 One network book review of Kaira Rouda's book Here, Home, Hope.   I really had trouble putting this book down.  The main character Kelly was so easy to relate too.  Kelly lives in "Grandville" which ironically we find is not always grand.  We are taken on Kelly's midlife journey to change the direction of her life now that her children are getting older and that she is facing her 40th birthday.  Kelly introduces us to several of her friends and through her journey she gains insight that things aren't always what they seem.  Those she has been envious of are actually envying her life.  This book is a quick read.  I would say it is a must read for this summer.  I was also very excited to see that this is only the first of several novels Kaira Rouda has planned taking place in Grandville.  I've included the book's video trailer but honestly it doesn't do the book justice.

    Visit Kaira Rouda's official website here.  Check out the book tour here: .   Follow Kaira Rouda on Twitter and Facebook.

    If you are an Amazon shopper Here, Home, Hope by Kaira Rouda is currently available for $10.20 (List $15).  This would make a great book for a book club or for you to read and share with your friends.  I'd love to hear your feedback after you've read Kaira Rouda's book Here, Home, Hope.  Please stop by and let us know what you think about this book.

    *Disclosure:  As a member of One 2 One Network I received a copy of Kaira Rouda's Here, Home, Hope for review.  The review is my own work and honest opinion.

    Wednesday, June 1, 2011

    Let's Move! May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month ~ GNC $100 Gift Card Giveaway~ Giveaway Winner

    The winner has been chosen and emailed.  The winner's name will be posted as soon as I get a reply.  If  I do not receive a reply within 48hrs a new winner will be chosen. 

    Check your emails!  Good Luck!

    And the winner is.......
    Congratulations to janetfaye!

    Tuesday, May 17, 2011

    Country Dance for Nintendo Wii ~ Review

    I was given the opportunity to review the new Country Dance game for Nintendo Wii by Gamemill.  I live very close to the country music capital however am only slightly familiar with country hits.  That being said, I knew almost all of the songs included on this game.  Do you want to have some fun and burn some calories?  This game will help you do just that.  The rating is E 10+ I'm sure for the lyrics of some of the songs.  My daughter and I enjoyed battling it out against each other with the various dances.  I actually found myself wanting more song choices and dances.  I hope they release a second version with a longer play list. 

    If you like to dance this game is worth a try.  If you like country music try Country Dance for some dancing fun.

    The tracklist includes 25 country music songs:
    Alan Jackson - Chattahoochee
    Miley Cyrus - Hoedown Throwdown
    Brooks & Dunn - Boot Scootin’ Boogie
    Billy Ray Cyrus - Achy Breaky
    Toby Keith - A Little Less Talk
    Dierks Bentley - What Was I Thinking
    Darius Rucker - Alright
    Gretchen Wilson - Redneck Woman
    Laura Bell Bundy - Giddy On Up
    Randy Travis - Forever and Ever Amen
    Tracy Byrd - Watermelon Crawl
    Josh Turner - Why Don’t We Just Dance
    Luke Brian - Ran is A Good Thing
    Mary Chapin Carpenter - I Feel Lucky
    Jerrod Niemann - Lover Lover
    Josh Thompson - Beer on the Table
    Easton Corbin - A Little More Country Than That
    Carrie Underwood - Cowboy Casanova
    Brad Paisley - Water
    Sugarland - Stuck Like Glue
    Trace Adkins - Honky Tonk Badonkadonk
    Tim McGraw - Just to See You Smile
    Zac Brown Band - Chicken Fried
    Rascal Flatts - Life is A Highway
    Blake Shelton - All About Tonight
    Miranda Lambert - White Liar
    Johnny Cash - Ring of Fire

    *Disclosure:  I was provided a copy of Country Dance for Nintendo Wii for review.  The review and opinions are my own.  I have not received any monetary compensation for this post.

    Monday, May 16, 2011

    Let's Move! May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month ~ GNC $100 Gift Card Giveaway~ Giveaway Closed

    Let's Move is the challenge started by President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama to help combat obesity.
    Let's Move focuses on four key components:
    1. Making Healthy Choices
    2. Healthier Foods in Schools
    3. Access to Healthy Affordable Food
    4. Increase Physical Activity
    I find it sad that obesity has become a national epidemic.  Obesity can lead to so many other health problems yet it is preventable and curable.  Small steps to change our lifestyles can literally save our lives and the lives of our children.  Here are a few things that have worked for my family.

    I'll be the first to admit that I am not a gourmet chef nor do I particularly enjoy cooking but I do love to eat.  Throughout my pregnancy and when I became a parent were the real eye openers for me to look at my eating habits more closely.  Today's family has so much packed in their schedule that they often overlook healthy eating habits by sliding through the drive through or ordering pizza.  I can admit that this has been the case with my own family especially when I held a job outside of the home.  How do we work nutritious meal choices into our schedules?  One of my best friends in the kitchen is my Crock Pot/Slow Cooker.  I love being able to toss ingredients into my crock pot in the morning then presto! I have a fast and nutritious option for dinner.  I've also avoided heating my house with the oven which is an added bonus.  I am fortunate in my home as that we all love vegetables.  I keep a freezer full of them.  Look out though be sure to read the packaging and go for the no salt added versions.  Most frozen veggies can go from microwave or stove to the table in less than 15 minutes.  We really can eat fast food at home with a little planning and discipline.  This will leave our families healthier and our wallets too!  For the ultra organized family plan your meals and put them on your calendar along with soccer practice, ballet, football, school functions etc.  Doing this you can adjust your meals to fit with the activity.  Just remember small changes over time can make a big difference.

    Snacking is also something we do a lot of.  I too am guilty of grabbing prepackaged snacks for on the go.  We have recently cut way down on the number of prepackaged snacks and started buying fruit to take for snacks.  One of my favorite snacks has become nuts.  They are delicious and often give you the pick me up that you need.  (here too look for low or no salt added)  Wash fruits and go ahead and prepackage them in snack sizes for easy grab and go accessibility.

    Staying active is also a part of fighting obesity.  I know by now this probably sounds like a confessional but, I have a motto that I am allergic to exercise.  My husband and daughter are both avid runners but that is not my thing whatsoever.  I do however enjoy aerobics, walking, swimming and love the new active fitness options for the wii.  Did you know that it is recommended that children get 1hr of physical activity a day and  30 minutes per day for adults?  Here again think small steps.  When I was working outside of the home I had a 3rd floor office conveniently located across from the elevator.  I made the decision to use the stairs instead and it was a change that was easy to do and I didn't miss the elevator at all!  I was reading today a study on colon cancer, the study looked at physical activity and the incidence of colon cancer and found that those who exercised an hour a week were at lower risk of developing colon cancer.  Wow!  That really opened my eyes especially since my father has colon cancer.

    Water, Water, Water.  Yes, water can help in the fight against obesity.  I am NOT talking about bottled water.  Please invest in eco-friendly reusable containers.  Did you know that most Americans do not get the recommended amount of water per day?  When you don't have enough water your body may tell you that you are hungry.  Think about that before you hit the snacks between meals.  Keeping water at your desk or with you can help curb hunger, stay hydrated and fight obesity.

    There are many resources for the Let's Move initiative:

    GNC is sponsoring this post by providing a $100 GNC giftcard to one lucky StuffSmart reader.

    Contest begins Monday, May 16, 2011 at 1:00pm EST.  Contest ends Monday May 30, 2011  at 10pm EST.  Contest open worldwide.  Winner will be chosen using  Winner will be contacted via email and will have 48hrs to reply.  If no reply is received a new winner will be chosen.  Limit entrants to one person per household.   Entrants are subject to disqualification if rules are violated.

    Mandatory entry(must be completed before any bonus entries to count):  Like GNC on facebook, follow @GNCLiveWell on twitter and follow @jeffhennion  returning to leave a comment saying that you have done so.
    Bonus Entries:  Please make a comment for each entry.  ie: If a bonus entry=3 Make 3 comments adding entry #1,#2,#3.
    • Please share whether or not you/your family have made any changes in your diet and/or activities. If so please share the changes you've made. 3 extra entries
    • Visit StuffSmart Blog's facebook page
    • Follow @StuffSmart on twitter.
    • Tweet : Sample tweets; "Let's Move! May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month ~ GNC $100 Gift Card Giveaway "    "@StuffSmart say's join National Physical Fitness & Sports Month & enter to win a $100 GNC gc #letsmove #fitness #GNC.  (May tweet up to 2x's per day at least 2 hours apart and leave tweet link.)
    • Follow StuffSmart using Google Friend Connect.  3 extra entries
    • Tell a friend!  Tell someone about this post.  If they enter and say that you referred them you will get an additional entry. unlimited
    • Blog about this giveaway including a link back.  Post must be at least 75 words and blog must have at least 20 followers. 5 extra entries

    Tuesday, April 26, 2011

    Attention: New York Area Readers: BARNES & NOBLE AND SANDRA BOYNTON JOIN TOGETHER ~ Boynton to Digitally Sign and Inscribe The Going to Bed Book App

    Press Release April 25, 2011 New York, New York Via Boynton Moo Media and loudcrow interactive:

    - On Monday, May 2, renowned writer and illustrator Sandra Boynton will become the world's first author to sign an eBook app for the general public. This historic signing will take place at 7:00 PM at Barnes & Noble's Upper East Side store, located at 150 E 86th Street at Lexington Avenue, in New York City.

    "This is a thoroughly incredible opportunity that Barnes & Noble is providing," says Boynton. "I am so proud of what Loud Crow and Moo Media have done together to re-envision The Going to Bed Book for the digital age. When it was finished, we all wanted so much to present our new book app publicly. So Loud Crow and Barnes & Noble came up with the app-signing concept, and it's such a cool idea. My only disappointment is that I was hoping some Esteemed Couture House was going to try to get me to wear their latest Haute Flannel Pajamas for the event, but so far, no luck."

    "We're definitely excited to be able to make history with this first-ever eBook app signing with Sandra," says Calvin Wang, Founder and President of Loud Crow Interactive. "It's been an amazing collaboration between Loud Crow and Boynton Moo Media and for us to share this watershed moment in book publishing makes this partnership even more extraordinary."

    For this event, children and adults alike are encouraged to come to the store in their pajamas. Boynton will first present a Storytime reading from the traditional version of her classic best-selling board book, The Going to Bed Book, published in 1982 by Simon & Schuster. (To date, there are over 5 million copies of this book in print.) She will then, using Barnes & Noble's NOOK Color eReader tablet, demonstrate the new app version of her book, with a screen projection behind her so that the audience will be able to easily watch her demonstration.

    Joining Boynton in her Storytime presentation will be famed British Invasion rocker Billy J. Kramer, the narrator of The Going to Bed Book app. Also performing will be Boynton's long-time songwriting and music producing partner, pianist/composer Michael Ford. There will also be on hand an energetic "Moo Brigade," a team of ten college students, each with a Nook Color tablet, ready to offer children individually the opportunity to try out The Going to Bed Book app themselves.

    Following the Storytime, and using a feature created for this event by her award-winning Vancouver-based digital publisher, Loud Crow Interactive, Boynton will digitally sign and personalize their debut collaboration, on customers' own NOOK Color eReader tablets.

    The World's First eBook App Signing, with Sandra Boynton

    Monday, May 2, 2011 at 7:00 PM

    Barnes & Noble Booksellers, 150 East 86th Street, NYC, (212 369-2180)

    Author and illustrator Sandra Boynton, British Invasion rocker Billy J. Kramer, and pianist/composer Michael Ford

    Monday, April 18, 2011

    Yoga Magazine 1year Subscription for $5

    Yoga Journal (1-year auto-renewal)

     Today's Magazine deal of the day on Amazon is Yoga Journal for $5 for a one year subscription.
    Get yours here: Yoga Journal (1-year auto-renewal)
    *Note that this offer includes one year auto-renewal and that will most likely be at Amazon's regular price.  However, you can go to "My Account" under your Amazon page and click Manage Magazine Subscriptions to turn the auto-renewal off if you don't want auto-renewal.