December 23, 2010

Blog Energizer

Energize Your Blog
Are you a new blogger? Or do you have a hard time knowing what to blog about? I like Blog Energizer. I have been a free member, and received many good resources. I plan to join the premium program this year.
Blog Energizer Premium

Free Resources

December 13, 2010

Redbox Deal



Redbox rentals Groupon 3 for $1 offer extended!

Hurry! the deal expires tomorrow.

The rental code Expires Mar 10, 2011.

December 1, 2010

Five Helpful Tips for Holiday Tech Shopping

I love Christmas! It reminds me of when I was a little girl. I was so excited as the big day approached. I loved to shake my presents and try to guess or really dream about what could be in there. I didn't actually peek because that would have spoiled the surprise. On Christmas Eve I could barely get to sleep because I couldn't wait for Santa Claus to come.

As I decorate the house and bake cookies, I love to watch Christmas movies and listen to Christmas songs. That really gets me in the Christmas spirit. Now that I have children, I get to see their excitement as Christmas approaches. I think I have one child that "sneaks a peek" of the presents under the tree. So I can't wrap them until close to Christmas. I keep them at my parents' house until then.

My kids want a lot of tech items such as an ipod nano and a small laptop computer. They also love games for the Wii and Nintendo DS. My son started his Christmas list last January!

Five Helpful Tips for Holiday Tech Shopping
1. Shop around for the best price! There are a lot of great sales this time of the year. Places like staples frequently have sales on all the great tech items you want. Check the sales ads for brick and mortar stores and check online for cyber sales.

2. Read about the item online. Several places have consumer reviews of the product. You can search the name of the item and reviews. Ex "ipod nano, reviews".

3. Decide what you need the item to have verses things you might like. For example, when I bought a very basic cellular telephone, I wanted just the phone. Things like a camera would be nice but not necessary. Because I knew what I needed the phone to have, I bought one for $9.00!

4. Don't be brand specific unless you have a good reason. My kids have basic mp3 players, but I can't get them to work with itunes. So they want an ipod so they can download itunes. Be open to various brands or store brands if they have good reviews.

5. Look for free shipping if buying online. Staples has free shipping over $50. That is a great way to send a gift if it has to be mailed to someone out of town.

I hope these tips were helpful as you shop for all the tech items on your list. Try not to get too caught up in consumerism. Slow down and enjoy the holidays. You are making memories. Don't forget the "Reason for the Season"- the birth of Jesus Christ.


About Staples:
"Staples, the world's largest office products company, is committed to making it easy for customers to buy a wide range of office products and services. Our broad selection of office supplies, electronics, technology and office furniture as well as business services, including computer repair and copying and printing, helps our customers run their offices efficiently. With 2009 sales of $24 billion and 91,000 associates worldwide, Staples operates in 26 countries throughout North and South America, Europe, Asia and Australia serving businesses of all sizes and consumers. Staples invented the office superstore concept in 1986 and today ranks second worldwide in e-commerce sales. The company is headquartered outside Boston."

More info: www.staples.com
Twitter: @staplestweets
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/staples

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

November 29, 2010

Skin Free and Blue Ridge Gypsy Half Price Sale

Skin Free Skincare

Today and Tomorrow November 29th and November 30th

Skin Free and Blue Ridge Gypsy products are on sale for half-price!

You will need to enter the special Discount Code THANKFUL (case sensitive) to receive your discount. Don't miss out on this opportunity to treat yourself and your friends.

Skin Free
is proud to announce that they have received the PTPA ("Parent Tested; Parent Approved")Award.

Get free shipping over $50. You can combine purchases from both stores.

My son has eczema, and he loves the skin free soap! They have many other great products. Hurry and don't miss this sale!

Winners

I have some winners to announce. They have been emailed also.

Nature Made Giveaway winner-Amanda
Random Integer Generator
Here are your random numbers:

5 Timestamp: 2010-11-29 19:23:32 UTC

"Following Saving Simplified on GFC"
amandacrna@gmail.com



SmartKnitKIDS Giveaway winner-Margo
Random Integer Generator
Here are your random numbers:

16 Timestamp: 2010-11-29 19:33:39 UTC

Margo said...
"I tweeted about your contest. :)"

November 26, 2010

Free VeggieTales Christmas Album

Free VeggieTales Christmas Album

Get into the Holiday spirit with "The Incredible Singing Christmas Tree," a full 16-track album by VeggieTales featuring Christmas favorites.
Ends 11/30

Click below to get your free download:
The Incredible Singing Christmas Tree

November 23, 2010

10 tips for Weaving the Hottest Runway Trends

"Sears Kenmore has announced the Runway to Washer Sweepstakes celebrating the Kenmore Elite Top-Load High Efficiency Washer/Dryer which custom-blends six different wash motions to ensure the right cleaning and care for your favorite clothes. You can enter for a chance to win the grand prize which includes a Kenmore washer and dryer, a year’s supply of Tide®, and a trip for two to NYC with seats at Thakoon’s show where you’ll meet the designer, and receive items from his collection!"

Enter the Kenmore Runway to Washer Sweepstakes


To promote the sweepstakes, I was asked to post 10 tips for weaving the hottest runway trends into your day-to-day looks. Well, that was difficult for me. As a mom in her 40's, I don't really keep up with the latest fashion trends. But I remember when I did. Try these tips:

1. Look in magazines to see the hottest fashion trends. Many magazines tell where you can get items cheaper. You can be in style without costing an arm and a leg.

2. Read fashion blogs. You can get a lot of info about what is hot right now. Just search "fashion, blog". I read a lot of blogs.

3. Add one new item to an outfit. For example, a stylish scarf can update a suit. Or a new blouse can update a skirt set.

4. Get a pair of boots. They can really update your look. Boots come in many colors and styles. Also there are various heel sizes available.

5. Attend a fashion show to see their latest styles. I suspect that many could be seen on television or the internet.

6. Add some color to your outfit. I like black outfits, but adding some color will brighten your look.

7. My daughter said the "military look" is popular now with camo prints. (At least that is what is popular at her school.)

8. See what the Hollywood "stars" are wearing. They are usually wearing some of the latest fashions.

9. Make sure your clothes are in good repair. Unless you are wearing jeans that are ripped because you bought them that way. ????

10. Don't forget the jewelry. A really cute piece can make an otherwise dull outfit look nice.

The main thing is to be yourself. Granted, you don't want to look like you just stepped out of the 70's, 80's, etc., but you don't have to follow every trend. I hope these tips have helped you think of some ways to find out what are the latest fashions and how to incorporate it into your look.


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

November 22, 2010

Teens and Money Management

Everyday I hear about the national debt, financial crisis, bankruptcy, etc. It can become depressing to hear all the bad news.

I am conservative about financial matters (along with other things), so I feel it is important for us to each take responsibility for our own actions. The government needs to be responsible also by reducing spending to decrease the national debt.

Unfortunately bad things can happen through no fault of our own like being laid off. But we can try to be prepared for financial emergencies. One way is to have an emergency fund.

I talk to my kids about money frequently especially when they are asking "Can I have this?" or "Can I have that?" My response is frequently "No, it's not on sale." or "I don't have a coupon for that." Unfortunately, when they have money, many times they "blow it" on candy or junk.

How do you teach your teen about money management? I give mine money as a reward for doing some work like the doing laundry. I don't give them a weekly allowance just for being my child, but I might consider an allowance if they would agree to do chores weekly.

I am looking for ways to teach them to be responsible with money. One option is the PASS card.



The PASS CARD:

PASS is a prepaid reloadable Card parents give to teens or young adults.

Parents load PASS with funds through an American Express Charge or Credit Card or through a bank, such as a checking or savings account.

Teens don’t have to carry large amounts of cash, and if lost or stolen, funds can be replaced.

Unlike credit, this is a prepaid card so there’s no risk of overspending.

An adult, 18 years or older, must register and load PASS online at www.americanexpress.com/pass, after verifying the user is 13 years or older.

PASS can be used virtually anywhere that accepts American Express.

I haven't tried the PASS card yet, but it might be a good option especially if the teen is going somewhere where a credit card is needed.

Do you have any tips for teens and money management? Have you tried the PASS card?

I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of American Express and received a gift code to thank me for taking the time to participate.

November 18, 2010

10 Tips for Stylish Layering Techniques

It is definitely fall where I live. The leaves are a variety of colors, and many have fallen from the trees. The fall reminds me of going to football games when I was in high school. Of course, we weren't there because we cared about football, but it was a great social outing. In the fall I enjoy "weenie roasts" over a campfire and making smores.
But with the cold weather we have to remember to dress warmly. A good way to do that is with layering clothes. That way you can remove a layer if you get too hot. I was to come up with 10 tips for stylish layering techniques for all occasions.

1. Wear a T-shirt under your other clothes. That is one of the basic layering techniques many people use.

2. Wear 2 or 3 layers of socks. I learned that from my brother-in-law who is a deer hunter. He has to keep warm while hunting.

3. Wear a hat and a scarf with your coat. Of course, you can always remove them if needed.

4. Wear long underwear under your clothes. For when it is really cold, a pair of long underwear can keep you very toasty.

5. Wear 2 or 3 shirts. People mainly do that when they have to be out in the cold for a long period of time. You can layer T-shirts or other shirts.

6. Wear a vest. It can add a stylish touch to your outfit. Around Christmas you can find many holiday themed sweater vests that are very cute.

7. Wear a turtleneck shirt. You can wear it alone or under another shirt or sweater.

8. Wear a matching jacket or blazer to top off a great outfit. Fitted jackets can be very slimming.

9. Wear leggings. Many people wear them with a skirt. It is not my style, but it looks cute on younger people.

10.Wear a warm coat. That is the most important part. And don't forget your gloves!

I hope these 10 tips will help keep you warm this winter. Remember you are making memories with your family, so don't forget to have fun!


About Cuddl Duds:
Cuddl Duds designs and manufactures high quality intimate apparel. As the leading warm underwear maker in America, Cuddl Duds has become synonymous with comfort and “feeling good.” Cuddl Duds is a wholly owned subsidiary of Komar.

Komar, the 102-year-old privately held apparel, consumer products and distribution services company, designs, markets and manufactures women's and children’s sleepwear, loungewear and lingerie. Komar is a progressive company with a global sourcing network that includes factories in fourteen countries andstate-of-the-art distribution facilities. Founded by Charles Komar in 1908, who stated “you only have one reputation,” the third-generation Komars adhere to this guiding principle while running the company today

More info: http://www.cuddlduds.com
Become a fan of Cuddl Duds on Facebook: www.facebook.com/cuddlduds
Follow Cuddl Duds on Twitter: @cuddlduds


I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Cuddl Duds blogging program, making me eligible to get a $40 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.

November 15, 2010

10 Holiday Survival Tips

Do you ever feel like you just want the holidays to be over? I know many people feel that way. We all know how stressful the holiday season can be. With presents to buy and wrap, cookies to bake, cards to send, decorating to do, etc. we can really miss the meaning of the holidays. Don't you wish you could slow down and focus on the real "Reason for the Season"? I will give you some tips to help.

1. Purchase items online. I buy a lot of things on Black Friday and Cyber Monday online. Amazon always has sales those days. Many other stores have great specials on those days.

2. Wrap presents as you go. It is helpful if you wrap a little at a time. I feel really rushed when I have a lot of wrapping to do at the end. If you wrap a little each day, you won't have to do it all at the end.

3. Prepare some items ahead of time. My mom was working on her cranberry salad last week. She freezes it until Thanksgiving, and that is one less thing to worry about.

4. Purchase items at sales before the Christmas season. That way you don't have to do all your shopping at the end. I buy for Christmas throughout the year.

5. Cut back on buying. For example if you exchange gifts with extended family or friends, set an amount like $25 per gift. That way you know you are spending the right amount.

6. Exchange names instead of buying for everyone on your list. My sister has been wanting to do that, but I have been reluctant because I love to buy for all my nieces and nephews. But it would certainly save a lot of time shopping and wrapping, and it would save money.

7. Cut back on decorating the house. I mean really, how many lights do you need? For those that love decorating, that is great. But if it is just another task you feel you have to do, cut back on the decorations. Remember when Jesus was born, there were no fancy decorations.

8. Cut back on your Christmas card list. If you haven't received a card from someone in years, then scratch their name off your list. For people you see frequently, you could just hand them the card thus saving on postage and finding all those addresses.

9. Share the responsibilities. If you are married, your spouse can help with decorating or wrapping, etc. Don't forget to include your kids in the fun. Let them help you bake cookies.

10. Focus on enjoying the time with your family and friends. You are making memories. Years from now your children may not remember exactly what they got for Christmas, but they will remember the fun times together.

I hope these tips were helpful to make your life easier during the holidays.

Have you seen http://www.tinyprints.com/photo-cards.htmJoin Tiny Prints on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/tinyprintsFollow Tiny Prints on Twitter: http://twitter.com/tinyprints
I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Tiny Prints blogging program, making me eligible to get a $75 Tiny Prints gift certificate! For more information on how you can participate, click here.

November 14, 2010

SmartKnitKIDS Giveaway Extended

I have extended the SmartKnitKIDS giveaway. I got busy and did not promote it as much as I should have. You can enter here:

SmartKnitKIDS giveaway

November 11, 2010

Making Life Easier During the Holidays

We all know how stressful the holiday season can be. With presents to buy and wrap, cookies to bake, cards to send, decorating to do, etc. we can really miss the meaning of the holidays. Don't you wish you could slow down and focus on the real "Reason for the Season"? I will give you some tips to help.

1. Purchase items online. I buy a lot of things on Black Friday and Cyber Monday online. Amazon always has sales those days. Many other stores have great specials on those days.

2. Wrap presents as you go. It is helpful if you wrap a little at a time. I feel really rushed when I have a lot of wrapping to do at the end. If you wrap a little each day, you won't have to do it all at the end.

3. Prepare some items ahead of time. My mom was working on her cranberry salad last week. She freezes it until Thanksgiving, and that is one less thing to worry about.

4. Purchase items at sales before the Christmas season. That way you don't have to do all your shopping at the end. I buy for Christmas throughout the year.

5. Cut back on buying. For example if you exchange gifts with extended family or friends, set an amount like $25 per gift. That way you know you are spending the right amount.

6. Exchange names instead of buying for everyone on your list. My sister has been wanting to do that, but I have been reluctant because I love to buy for all my nieces and nephews. But it would certainly save a lot of time shopping and wrapping, and it would save money.

7. Cut back on decorating the house. I mean really, how many lights do you need? For those that love decorating, that is great. But if it is just another task you feel you have to do, cut back on the decorations. Remember when Jesus was born, there were no fancy decorations.

8. Cut back on your Christmas card list. If you haven't received a card from someone in years, then scratch their name off your list. For people you see frequently, you could just hand them the card thus saving on postage and finding all those addresses.

9. Share the responsibilities. If you are married, your spouse can help with decorating or wrapping, etc. Don't forget to include your kids in the fun. Let them help you bake cookies.

10. Focus on enjoying the time with your family and friends. You are making memories. Years from now your children may not remember exactly what they got for Christmas, but they will remember the fun times together.

I hope these tips were helpful to make your life easier during the holidays. Oral-B is helping Operation Smile during the holidays.


About the Oral-B “Glide Into the Holidays” Program
To help make the holiday season easier, Oral-B Glide along with “General Hospital” star Vanessa Marcil Giovinazzo, will kick off the “Glide Into The Holidays” program benefiting Operation Smile, with a free skate day on November 11th at New York City’s Wollman Rink in Central Park. At the event, families are invited to Glide on the ice to raise money for Operation Smile, an international children’s medical charity that provides free surgeries to repair cleft lips, cleft palates and other facial deformities for children around the globe.

To grant holiday wishes to kids globally with cleft lips, cleft palates and other facial deformities Oral-B Glide will make a donation for every pledge made at the event. Additionally, Oral-B Glide and Vanessa hope to inspire others to stick to their oral care routine this holiday season by pledging to switch to Glide online through Facebook and Twitter. For every person who tweets or posts on Oral-B’s Facebook wall with the hashtag #Switch2Glide through February 28, 2011, Oral-B® Glide™ will donate $1 to Operation Smile with a guaranteed donation of $10,000 over the course of the entire campaign.

About Operation Smile
Founded in 1982 and headquartered in Norfolk, Virginia, Operation Smile is a worldwide children’s medical charity whose network of global volunteers are dedicated to helping improve the health and lives of children and young adults. Since its founding, Operation Smile volunteers have treated more than 150,000 children born with cleft lips, cleft palates and other facial deformities and the organization has a presence in more than 60 countries. In addition to contributing free medical treatment, Operation Smile trains local medical professionals in its partner countries and leaves behind crucial equipment to lay the groundwork for long-term self-sufficiency. For more information, please visit www.operationsmile.org.

More info: http://www.oralb.com

Join Oral-B on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/oralb

Follow Oral-B on Twitter: http://twitter.com/oralb

Tweet-a-thon
Here is a tweet which for you to tweet in the Oral-B Glide tweet-a-thon for a chance to win one of ten $20 Target Gift Cards!

Support Oral-B Glide donations to Operation Smile http://on.fb.me/dfQE67. RT w/ hashtag #Switch2Glide for a chance to win a $20 gift card!


I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Oral-B blogging contest, making me eligible to get full-sized Oral-B Glide products and a $30 Target gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.

Nature Made Prenatal Vitamin Giveaway


I love Nature Made products for my vitamin and supplement needs. I am a member of their Wellness Rewards program where I earn free product coupons by entering the code on the bottles I have purchased. It is an easy program, and I have earned several free coupons thus far. Since I love their products, I jumped at the chance to participate in their prenatal vitamin blog tour.

Nature Made Prenatal Multi Tablet is a complete multi vitamin/mineral with key vitamins and minerals necessary for the good health of pregnant and lactating women.

From their site:
"Nature Made knows that pregnant and lactating women have special health needs for the development of their child. Nature Made has formulated Prenatal Multi tablet with those needs in mind. This formula is rich in:

• High Folic Acid content (100% of the Daily Value for pregnant and lactating women), which is important in the healthy development of the nervous system and fetus. Adequate Folic Acid in healthful diets may reduce a woman’s risk of having a child with brain or spinal cord birth defect.

• Iron is essential for a healthy pregnancy by supporting energy and healthy development of the fetus.

• Zinc provides healthy fetal growth

• Vitamin D is important for bone health of both mother and fetus"

You can print a coupon for $1 off any Nature Made Product. They also have several other printable coupons available there.

The great people at Nature Made have agreed to provide one of my readers a 9-month supply of Prenatal + DHA, 2 packs of cloth diapers and a food processor.

Mandatory: To enter visit their site and print a coupon or sign up for their Wellness Rewards program. Then come back and leave a comment letting me know what you did. Please, leave your email address, so I can contact the winner.

Bonus entries: Leave an extra comment for each one.

1. Subscribe to this blog
2. Follow this blog
3. Subscribe to my new blog Saving Simplified.
4. Follow my new blog Saving Simplified on Google Friend connect.
5. Leave a comment on any post on Saving Simplified to get 2 entries. (Please leave 2 comments on this post for 2 entries.)
6. Follow me @donnak4 and tweet about the contest. Then leave the link or your twitter ID.
Here is one you can use:

Win 9 month supply of Nature Made Prenatal + DHA,cloth diapers, and a food processor.
http://tinyurl.com/2g6vyto

This is for the US. Ends 11/21/2010 at 11:59 CST.

I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour by Mom Central on behalf of Nature Made and received the products necessary to facilitate my review and giveaway.

November 5, 2010

Listerine/Reach Oral Care Challenge


We received a variety of LISTERINE and REACH products. For the tour my kids and I were to brush, floss, and rinse with mouthwash twice a day for three weeks.

Well, like usual, I had to nag my kids to get them to do it twice a day. Once I got them in there, they liked it. My kids' favorite was the Listerine Agent Cool Blue Pre-Brush Rinse. It turned their teeth blue and showed them where to concentrate their brushing. They also liked the taste.

I like reach toothbrushes. My mouth felt very clean. I feel if we keep this up, we will get great reports at our next dentist visits.


The makers of LISTERINE and REACH have also teamed up with America's Toothfairy to launch "Trick or Treat for America's Toothfairy," a campaign to raise awareness of pediatric dental disease and help provide life changing care to underserved children. For a minimum $10 tax-deductible donation, America’s Toothfairy will send your child a personalized letter that emphasizes the importance of oral hygiene.

I wrote this review while participating in a blog campaign by Mom Central on behalf of LISTERINE and REACH and received products to take the Oral Care Challenge. Mom Central also sent me a gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate.

October 28, 2010

10 Great Uses for Vaseline Petroleum Jelly

Vaseline Petroleum Jelly is celebrating its 140th Anniversary! I did not realize it had been around that long. They are gathering a list of 140 great uses for Vaseline. Vaseline is very versatile and useful. Many uses are beauty related, but I'll bet there are many you haven't thought about.

This is a list of 10 ways to use Vaseline.

1.To treat dry feet put a coat of Vaseline on your feet at night, and cover them with socks. Some people cover it with plastic wrap to enhance the absorption.

2. For those with eczema or severe dry skin, it is a great moisturizer. Apply it after bathing or showering to seal in the moisture.

3. It is great to shine your shoes and bags. Just apply with a paper towel or clean cloth, and wipe off the excess.

4. Put Vaseline on your lips and after a few minutes scrub your lips with a toothbrush to exfoliate and leave them smoother.

5. Apply it to help remove a stuck on ring. Put it above and below it to slowly slip off the ring.

6. You can put it on your eyebrows to help keep them under control. Just apply a small amount.

7. Apply it to your legs to smooth and soothe skin after shaving.

8. Apply Vaseline on your teeth prevents lips from sticking to teeth. I read that many celebrities and contestants in beauty pageants that smile a lot do this.

9. Vaseline is great on chapped lips. I apply it at night before I go to bed. In the morning my lips are soft and smooth.

10. Apply to cuticles after a manicure for a perfect look.

This is a list of 10 uses for Vaseline, but there are many more. Look for the hashtag #Vaseline140 on twitter or check out the widget on my blog on the right for more great uses.

More info: http://www.vaseline.com/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/vaselinebrand
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/vaseline

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

October 27, 2010

Little Miss Matched Sale


Hurry! Check out the sales at Little Miss Matched. I found several cute things on sale that will make great Christmas gifts.

Sale: 20% OFF Outlet products! Applies to all items under outlet categories.
Coupon Code: OUTLET
Expires October 27th at 10pm EST.

Sale: Save 50% off in the Baby Blow Out
Coupon Code: No code necessary
Expiration Date: ongoing

October 26, 2010

Be Smart About Your Health: Benefits Planning Made Simple

For many people choosing insurance coverage is a difficult process because it can be confusing. According to a survey more than half of the participants said it is easier to read Shakespeare than their health insurance policy. That same survey showed "almost 70 percent of Americans say they’re paying more attention to what health benefits options are available because of the new health reform law."

According to news on television insurance costs are rising, and more of that cost is being passed on to the employee. With rising costs we all need to make decisions about what coverage is the most important. For people who are self employed and purchase their insurance themselves, the questions are similar. Open enrollment is frequently in the fall, when employees choose their health plans for the following year. That is when you can make changes to your health benefits plan.

For example, I am not covered on an employer plan currently. When I got my current insurance one of the most important things to me was cost. I mainly wanted insurance to protect me and my family in case of something serious. People can easily get a hospital bill of $10-$20,000. I can get most prescriptions as generic, so I decided to get a high deductible insurance plan with cheaper monthly payments.

Aetna has a website called Be Smart About Your Health that can help with making insurance decisions. To help you can do the following things:

1. Prioritize
Decide what benefits are most important to you. For example, do you have a family doctor that you already see and like? Then it would likely be important that he or she participates in the plan you pick. Do you take many medications? Are they expensive? Your Health Benefits Priorities can help you with your decisions.

2. Calculate
You need to calculate your medical costs and insurance premium costs. Can you afford it? Would a Health Savings Account (HSA) be a good idea?

3. Predict
What screening tests will you need next year? Is it time for a colonoscopy? Do you plan to get pregnant? Do you have a chronic disease? Do the kids need braces?

4. Compare
Compare the insurance plan benefits to make the best decision. Sites like sites like www.GoHealthInsurance.com can help you compare plans.

5. Just do it!
It really isn't that hard once you get started. You do things like brush your teeth and try to eat healthy foods. This is another way to take care of your health.

I hope these tips have helped in your health insurance decision making. Go to Be Smart About Your Health that can help with making insurance decisions.

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

October 20, 2010

KT Tunstall Tiger Suit CD Review


Where does the time go? It seems like a short time ago I was a teenager, and listened to music all the time. Well, let's just say I am not a teenager anymore. :( It seems that I am too busy to listen to music much, and I don't get to hear new artists very often. I was happy when I was selected to review KT Tunstall's new release "Tiger Suit" by one2onenetwork.

KT is a Grammy-nominated, multi-platinum, Scottish-born singer-songwriter

Tiger Suit was released October 5th and her rollicking first single "Fade Like A Shadow" is already a Top 20 hit at radio.

KT will be on tour this Fall (10/31-12/1)

KT's previous hit songs include - the Grammy-nominated "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree," "Suddenly I See," Other Side of the World" or "Hold On".

Song List:
1. Uummannaq Song
2. Glamour Puss
3. Push That Knot Away
4. Difficulty
5. Fade Like A Shadow
6. Lost
7. Golden Frames
8. Come On, Get In
9. (Still A) Weirdo
10. Madame Trudeaux
11. The Entertainer
You can listen to samples of the songs here.

Well, I have to say I liked it! The songs have a good rock beat, but not heavy metal. I would recommend it.

You can learn more about KT on her website. You can follow her on twitter or facebook.

I received the CD to facilitate my review. The review is my personal opinion. I did not receive any compensation, but I will be entered to win a gift card through One2One Network by participating.

October 19, 2010

Bing "Our School Needs" Contest

I am sure you are aware of the budget cuts occurring in schools across the country due to the poor economy. Our school requests the parents to donate school supplies and things like tissues.

Bing is sponsoring a great contest to help schools with some needed money.

"Our School Needs is a contest where you tell us what your school needs. Your “need” can be anything that your school needs to help kids receive a better education—from a new library, to new computers, books, supplies, even air conditioning. Once you enter, get people to rate it, and if your entry makes it to the finals, get people to vote for it. The stakes are high. Your school could win a $100,000 grand prize or one of three $50,000 first prizes."



You can upload photos, essays and videos telling Bing what your school needs for a chance to win up to $100,000! The deadline was extended until midnight PST on Sunday October 24rd. Click on this link to read more about the Bing "Our School Needs" Contest.

Hurry to get your entries submitted.

I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Bing and received a DonorsChoose.org giving code and gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate.

October 15, 2010

SmartKnitKIDS Review and Giveaway

8

Do your children complain about seams or tags in their clothes? They may have a sensory processing problem. My son complains if something "doesn't feel right", and tags and seams are "itchy".

I was recently given the opportunity to try SmartKnitKIDS socks.

SmartKnitKIDS® patented seamless socks are perfect for children experiencing sensory processing differences, hypersensitivity or who simply can’t stand annoying seams! These super soft socks for sensitive little feet will not wrinkle or bunch and are proven to reduce irritation.

No Seams to Bug Ya!
Completely free of seams, the patented kids' socks are designed to provide comfort and relief to children who struggle with “bumps & lumps” in their socks.

Reduces annoying wrinkling and bunching in the shoe
Corespun yarns using Lycra and form-fitting design result in children's socks that “hug” the foot reducing wrinkling and bunching. The form fitting design also helps to keep socks on the wiggliest of toes.

Unique no heel design
“No heel” design allows children to put on socks with confidence and keeps little feet from outgrowing their socks so quickly.

Comfortable Non-Binding Top
Our non-binding Halo Top™ fits comfortably without slipping down the leg.Regular socks often have elastic bands at the tops of the sock that can often pinch, bind or be a source of irritation.

Keeps Feet Dry & Healthy
SmartKnitKIDS™ Socks are made with high-tech fibers that wick moisture away helping control odor or "stinky feet".

They come in ankle, crew, and knee high styles in a variety of colors and sizes.

My son loved them! The material was soft and felt durable. And since there were no seams, he did not complain when he wore them. I would definately recommend them.

The great people at SmartKnitKIDS have agreed to send one winner 3 pairs of socks!

Mandatory: To enter please tell me what style, size, and color you would pick. Please, leave your address, so I can contact the winner.

Bonus entries: Leave an extra comment for each one.

1. Subscribe to this blog
2. Follow this blog
3. Subscribe to my new blog Saving Simplified.
4. Leave a comment on any post on Saving Simplified to get 2 entries. (Please leave 2 comments here for the 2 entries.)
5. Post my button on your blog
6. Follow me @donnak4 and tweet about the contest. Then leave the link or your twitter ID.
Here is one you can use:

Win SmartKnitKIDS socks. Kids love them! http://tinyurl.com/38g8fh6

This is for US and Canada. Ends 11/28/2010 at 11:59 CST.

October 5, 2010

Free Crochet ebook

AllFreeCrochet

Free Chips and Queso at Chilis

Join Swag Bucks

WIN FREE PRIZES just by searching the web. SWAG BUCKS are digital dollars that you earn just for doing the things you're already doing. You'll never need another search engine! Register now to get started. No credit card required! Click Here

I have earned 19 $5 Amazon gift cards so far! That is $95 just for doing my regular searches on Swag Bucks instead of google or yahoo or other search engines.

40 Free Prints at York Photo

September 22, 2010

Marlo Thomas is going digital


Join Marlo at the just-launched MarloThomas.com in partnership with AOL -- a new site where Marlo will connect with and inspire women, sharing a laugh, and, most importantly, building a community of support so we can all keep dreaming and achieving!

And she wants to hear from you and tell your story - with video series such as Hero Next Door. Marlo will find and profile amazing women - just like you. Watch the first feature - about Lu Picard of Torrington, Conn. - and then tell Marlo about a fabulous woman you know. Nominate a Hero now by emailing heroes@marlothomas.com!

In addition to launching MarloThomas.com, Marlo's now on social media, too. Follow her Twitter account at @Marlo_Thomas and become a Facebook fan at facebook.com/MarloThomas.

Her active, personal participation on social platforms and her new site provides a great opportunity for two-way communication between Marlo and the community of people she has inspired over the years.

What can you expect from Marlo on MarloThomas.com, Twitter and Facebook?

· original content - stories, posts, videos, and photos
· great conversations, laughs and inspiration
· observations on popular culture and news
· entertaining clips of "Free to Be You and Me" and "That Girl"
· galleries of celebrity images
· family photos
· ...and a lot more

You can also subscribe to Marlo on YouTube at youtube.com/marlothomas to see new videos each week from Marlo where she will give advice, inspiration, laughs, and more.

When asked why she's going digital, Marlo says the answer is easy. "I want to step out from behind the one-way mirror of television and have a real conversation with women," says Marlo. "I haven't stopped dreaming; you shouldn't either! It's your turn: What should we talk about together?"

This digital effort coincides with the upcoming release of Marlo's newest book, Growing Up Laughing (available Sept. 28).

September 19, 2010

Vistaprint Free Products


Have you ever ordered from Vistaprint? I have ordered from them several times, and I have been pleased with the quality of their products. A few times I ordered postcards to use for mail in sweeps. Also I like to get their return address labels.

The great news is using this link you can get products for FREE! You do have to pay for shipping.

Free products include the following:

• Free Business Cards

• Return Address Labels

• Free Rubber Stamps

• Free Sticky Notes

• Calendars

• Photo Flip Books

• Free Tote Bags

• Free Mugs

• Photo Notebooks

• Free Mouse Pads
Click Here You can't beat FREE!

September 15, 2010

Deals on Nintendo DS Games for Kids

I found some great deals for nintendo DS games for kids. They look great for Christmas presents. Remember to check free shipping.
Club Penguin: Elite Penguin Force
by Disney
Rated: E for Everyone

It is on sale for $9.99! Regular price $34.99.


Best Friends Tonight
by UBI Soft
Rated: Everyone 10+

It is on sale for $9.60! Regular price $29.99.


Disney Stitch Jam
by Disney
Rated: E for Everyone

It is on sale for $11.13! Regular price $19.99.

Tropical Traditions Organic Raw Honey Review and Giveaway



I was recently given the opportunity to try Tropical Traditions Organic Canadian Honey. This is my opinion....

It is the best honey I have ever tasted!

Honestly. When I tried it I was expecting a regular honey taste, but I was really surprised. The best way I can describe it is a creamy, sweet flavor. I am definitely going to get more.

I think the description on the website will help:
"Tropical Traditions Organic Raw Honey has not been subjected to the heat of processing, only warmed enough to flow (same temperatures the honey would see inside the hive). We select only premium honey that is pure, smooth and creamy, with the consistency of soft margarine at harvest. It contains live yeast and enzymes, because it has not been processed. It also contains pollen because it has not been filtered—merely screened.

Fine textured crystals are characteristic of totally pure, unheated, unprocessed, raw honey. Properly crystallized honey has a fine, smooth texture. Crystallized honey preserves natural goodness and doesn’t drip. The more rapidly honey crystallizes the finer the texture will be. It will also turn harder over time as it crystallizes. Truly raw honeys do not deteriorate with age, but like fine wines, continue to age and develop into more complex tastes."

They are having some great sales now, including the organic Canadian raw honey. If you list me (5130187) as your referral your first-time purchase will also receive a FREE gift, their book "Virgin Coconut Oil: How it has changed people's lives and how it can change yours!" This book is packed with testimonies and solid research showing how healthy coconut oil is, and it also included over 85 recipes showing how one can incorporate coconut into your diet.

For your chance to win a jar of Organic Honey like the one I reviewed, Subscribe to the Tropical Traditions newsletter. Then leave a comment with your email address. You need to do this first.

Bonus entries: Leave an extra comment for each one.
1. Tell me something else you would like to try from Tropical Traditions
2. Follow Tropical Traditions on twitter. Leave your twitter name.
3. Like Tropical Traditions on facebook
4. Subscribe to this blog
5. Follow this blog
6. Subscribe to my new blog Saving Simplified.
7. Leave a comment on any post on Saving Simplified to get 2 entries. (Please leave 2 comments here for the 2 entries.)
8. Post my button on your blog
9. Follow me @donnak4 and tweet about the contest. Then leave the link or your twitter ID.
Here is one you can use:

Win delicious tropical traditions organic honey. http://tinyurl.com/27csl9n

This is for US and Canadian residents and ends 9/29/2010 at 11:59 CST.
Note for Canadian bloggers: Tropical Traditions is not responsible for customs or duties that Canada may charge if you decide to participate in this Tropical Traditions sponsored blog giveaway.
Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose. Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product.

September 14, 2010

Totino's Box Tops, Party Pizza, and Pizza Rolls Giveaway



This fall, Totino´s is also helping to support your child´s school. Totino´s Party Pizzas will now carry Box Tops for Education! Now through September 15, Totino´s is offering two Box Tops for Education on every Totino´s product. Although that is getting close, they will likely be available much longer depending on yur grocer.

As you jot down pencils and notebooks on your shopping list, remember to include Totino´s® Party Pizza® and Pizza Rolls® Snacks - kids´ most favorite thing for your freezer! I know my kids love them. Honestly, they would rather have a Totino´s® Party Pizza® than have on delivered from a pizza place!


My Blog Spark set me a great prize pack including a backpack and school supplies, a coupon for Totino´s® Party Pizza® and Pizza Rolls® Snacks, as well as 25 Bonus Box Tops. The good news is that you have an opportunity to win the same prize pack!

To enter, please tell me what tips do you have to make surviving the back to school season easier? Please leave your email address also.

Bonus entries: Leave an extra comment for each one.

1. Subscribe to this blog
2. Follow this blog
3. Subscribe to my new blog Saving Simplified.
4. Leave a comment on any post on Saving Simplified to get 2 entries. (Please leave 2 comments here for the 2 entries.)
5. Post my button on your blog
6. Follow me @donnak4 and tweet about the contest. Then leave the link or your twitter ID.
Here is one you can use:

Win a great Totinos Prize pack. http://tinyurl.com/2d7hfhn

This is for US and ends 9/28/2010 at 11:59 CST.

I received the prize pack as noted above for my participation from My Blog Spark.

September 13, 2010

Lose-A-Palooza


Wouldn’t it be great if you could help fight hunger – and encourage your friends to do the same – simply by using your favorite social network to spread the word?
On September 14, 2010, you can! Lose-A-Palooza is a one-day social media event created to encourage participation in the Lose For Good® campaign to benefit Share Our Strength and Action Against Hunger.

For every accepted mention or acknowledgment of “Lose For Good” made on September 14th through blogs, Twitter, Facebook and check-ins via foursquare, Weight Watchers will donate $1 – up to $60,000* – to Share Our Strength and Action Against Hunger.

Here are some tweets you can use:

Save the date 9/14 Lose-A-Palooza-1 day only-Weight Watchers donates $1 for each #LoseForGood socmed mention http://bit.ly/LoseAPalooza

Today Only! Lose-A-Palooza -Weight Watchers donates up to $1 for each #LoseForGood social media mention http://bit.ly/LoseAPalooza

Please go to the Lose-A-Palooza website for details.

Also please comment on this post. Don’t forget to include “Lose For Good” in your comment to help raise money. Thanks.

September 11, 2010

Great Deal on Pet Products


Check out this great deal on Eversave. $12 for $25 worth of pet jewelry and accessories to keep Fido and Mittens looking fabulous. http://eversave.com/share/zYh7

And you get $5 off your first purchase! So it will cost $7 for $25 of items. I wanted to share it with you. It is listed under Cincinnati, but it is online.

Free Kidorable Umbrella


Hurry! They are having a great deal at kidorable.


Their products are so cute!

September 10, 2010

Great Grocery Deals at Amazon

Pack of 8 Betty Crocker Homestyle Reds, 100% Real Mashed Potatoes, 3.3-Ounce Packages $8.32
Then - 15% with code GMBOXTOP
Then - 15% with subscribe and save (you can cancel after it ships)
= $5.82 ! That's only $0.73 per package!

General Foods International French Vanilla Cafe 6 cans for $9
-15% with subscribe and save (you can cancel after it ships)
= $7.65 for 6 cans = $1.28 each!

Remember to click on free shipping.

6 Months Freeze Dried Food Supply Sale

Extra $90 off of a 6 month supply of freeze dried entrees at The Ready Store.

Use coupon code FF1009010SME

Also you get free shipping!

From their site:
"For those who want a complete 6-months worth of Mountain House gourmet tasting foods, this superior 6-month supply was made for you. Now you and your family can enjoy fast, delicious tasting meals anytime with no preparation or cooking! Just add water and eat. This supply is a great addition to your reserves!

● No cooking or preparation! Just add water.
● 18 #10 cans that come in 3 easy to store cases.
● 100% Freeze-Dried food for the highest quality and shelf life available.
● Up to a 30 Year Shelf-Life!
● Trusted gourmet quality from the Saratoga Farms and Mountain House brands!

Mountain House™ freeze-dried foods are second to none in terms of quality and taste. Freeze-Dried foods offer many advantages over dehydrated foods. To Begin with they taste much better because through the freeze-drying process the foods retain their taste, texture, and shape of fresh frozen foods. In addition, freeze-drying locks in the freshness, vitamins, nutrients, color, and aroma of fresh frozen foods while providing the shelf-stable convenience of canned and dehydrated foods.

All the contents of our Mountain House™ food storage units are 100% FREEZE-DRIED FOOD with a 30-YEAR SHELF LIFE. At The Ready Store, we always focus on the QUALITY of our products first, rather than quantity because we want you to get the best value for your hard-earned money."

September 3, 2010

Winners

I have some winners to announce.

SAM-e giveaway winner is Barbarawr.
Random Integer Generator
Here are your random numbers:
44 Timestamp: 2010-08-30 13:24:37 UTC
Barbarawr who said "I Subscribe to your new blog Saving Simplified with google reader.
Email address is in blogger profile"

The Cystex giveaway winner is cass.
Random Integer Generator
Here are your random numbers:
13 Timestamp: 2010-09-03 05:27:11 UTC
cass said "Subscribed by email."

The Uneaks giveaway winner is Emily Robison.
Random Integer Generator
Here are your random numbers:
60 Timestamp: 2010-09-03 05:52:07 UTC
Emily said "I like the White Valley Lace shoes, Princess - Splatters Crew Sock and Hearts - Stars Crew Sock"

The winners have been emailed. Thanks to everyone who entered, and I have many more giveaways coming up.

September 2, 2010

10 Ways to Make Your Favorite Foods Healthier

Recently diabetes has increased a lot in this country. There are many theories about why this has occurred, but one thing is for sure - We are getting heavier as a society. I have never wanted to be as thin as a rail, but I don't want to be heavy. So I try to make the foods I eat more healthy. But I am certainly a work in progress.

It seems that most women are dieting frequently. But it has been shown that "dieting" alone doesn't lead to long term weight loss. It has to be accompanied with behavior changes and changes in the diet long term.

I was asked to compose list of 10 ways of making your favorite foods healthier.

1. Avoid frying- Baking or boiling will make meats and other things have less fat and thus less calories. I saw a recipe about how to make French fries that are baked. I tried it, and they were very good without all the fat.

2. Eat more fresh foods- Frequently when things are cooked, fat and sugar are added to improve taste. Canned items frequently have a lot of salt. A nice, fresh salad is tasty without many calories or fat (stay away from the dressing.)

3. Steam foods- You can steam veggies to cook them without added fat. (and skip the cheese and butter.)

4. Skip the salt shaker- Salt makes many people retain water. Also some people are sensitive to salt, and it increases their blood pressure.

5. If you use dressing on your salad, use on that is low fat. Some only have 5 calories a serving.

6. Cook from scratch more. You can control the amount of fat and sugar added to make it more healthy.

7. Avoid white bread. Switch to whole grain bread.

8. Eat more fiber. When you increase your whole grain consumption, it makes you feel fuller. It also helps the end product of digestion. (if you know what I mean.)

9. Limit or avoid margarine, butter, mayonnaise and sour cream. If you use them, try the lower fat versions.

10. Switch from regular ground beef to lean or extra-lean ground beef, ground chicken and turkey breast. That decreases the fat and calories.

Another thing I recommend it to increase your intake of filtered water. Filtered water is healthy and makes you feel fuller.

These tips are some easy ways to make your favorite foods more healthy. Hopefully, we can all become more healthy and lose some weight at the same time.



About the sponsor-"From breakfast to lunch, dinner, desserts and snacks, Weight Watchers® Smart Ones® has a variety of great tasting, good-for-you meal options to help you manage your weight. So start eating smart, today."
You can get coupons here.



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.

September 1, 2010

Ten Tips for a Cleaner, Greener Home

Ten Tips for a Cleaner, Greener Home

I am always looking for ways to make cleaning my home easier and safer. I don't believe in global warming, but I do think it is good to avoid chemicals whenever possible because many are toxic.

Also, you can save money by making your own cleansers.

1. Open the windows when you clean. Also it is a good idea to open your windows to allow fresh air in at other times.

2. Stains, mildew or grease streaks can be cleaned with lemon juice or vinegar. Let it sit for a few minutes then scrub with a stiff brush.

3. Never mix bleach with ammonia, vinegar, or other acids becauuse the combination can produce harmful gases.

4. Avoid air fresheners because they only disguise odors. Instead you can open a window, and a box of baking soda is another safe way to eliminate odor. Also, fresh flowers are great smelling!

5. Use a baking soda and water paste to clean the oven.

6. Baking soda can also be used to remove stains. You mix the baking soda and water into a paste and let set for a while. It also works well for stainless steel sinks, containers, refrigerators, cutting boards, oven tops and more.

7. If you need a tougher abrasive cleaner, you can use kosher salt. You sprinkle it on and scrub with a wet cloth or sponge.

8. Use dishrags and towels instead of paper towels. It will save you a lot of money and significantly decrease the waste going in the landfills.

9. Mop with a vinegar solution (¼ cup vinegar in 1 quart of water).

10. To clean windows mix 2 tablespoons of white vinegar with a gallon of water. Put it in a spray bottle. Squirt it on then scrub with newspaper. Paper towels cause streaking.


If you do use toxic cleansers:

Only used what is necessary to clean the area, but don't over do it.

Keep the children away because they are more vulnerable to toxic chemicals. If they like to help, let them clean with soap and water but not toxic cleaners.

Use gloves and other precautions because cleaning chemicals may harm or penetrate skin and eyes. Be sure to check warning labels.

Avoid "antibacterial" cleansers. according to the American Medical Association
there is no need to use potentially toxic "antibacterial" products if your family is generally healthy. Wash your hands with plain soap and water.

Take care with pine and citrus oil cleaners especially on smoggy days, when the ingredients can react with ozone to produce cancer causing formaldehyde.


As you can see there are many safer alternatives to cleaning your home. I like them because they are safer and save me money.

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 .

August 29, 2010

Securatrac



As you know I am very concerned about child safety. I am also concerned about privacy rights with some gps tracking devices. They can be used for good or evil. One good use can be as an amber alert gps tool.

Child safety is important. I founds some info from SecuraTrac:
"Every 40 seconds someone’s son or daughter is reported missing, totaling over 800,000 missing children in the United States each year. Whether you are in a crowded shopping mall, amusement park or even a neighborhood park, as a parent, turning around and not seeing your child induces instant panic and a sinking feeling in your stomach.

There are a few steps parents can take to help shorten the time it takes to locate their child should he or she ever go missing. The first step is to remain as calm as possible and other tips that can help include:

1.Teach your children to look for other moms or dads to ask for help if they ever get separated from you.

2.Practice memorizing last name, address, home phone and cell phone numbers with your children by turning them into a rhyme or pneumonic device so the child can recall it when they are scared.

3.Check around your home in places that would be easy to hide or places where young children might get trapped.

4.Keep a current photograph on hand.

5.Notify local law enforcement and the media and report where they were last seen, what they were wearing and other key pieces of identifying information.

6.Contact the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) on their toll-free telephone number: 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).

7.Consider renting or purchasing a GPS locator for gps tracking your child that can notify you if you child leaves home and allows them to send you an SOS message if they are in danger." It can be used as an amber alert gps tool. Check out SecuraTrac for more information.

Great news! Free shipping by using code pal08shipping. But hurry, it is expires August 31 2010.



This post contains affiliate links.

August 26, 2010

NEVER SHOUT NEVER - Harmony

NEVER SHOUT NEVER With nearly 1 million fans on Facebook and MySpace and over 1 million tracks sold in the US, alternative retro-pop band Never Shout Never is evoking excitement from even the most jaded teen with their debut album Harmony!

Harmony was just released this week and the band will be rocking living rooms across America with their appearance on The Jimmy Fallon Show next Friday.

As a Back-to-School gift, the band is delighting fans and getting the masses ready for their headlining VMA tour by making Harmony available for 50% off thru Saturday only at Target - just $7.99 (sale price available in stores only).

New NEVER SHOUT NEVER CD - 50% Off at Target thru Sat. 8/28 - $7.99 -
Your kids will think you're cool :)
Please note the deal is good in stores only thru this Sat. Aug. 28 - Just 3 more days!

This was posted for a chance to win a CD or a pair of tickets to their show through @One2OneNetwork.

10 Tips for Planning a Unique Baby Shower



Tiny Prints and TwitterMoms are teaming up with a fun new blogging program. I was to post about making a unique baby shower. I love baby showers. Everyone is so happy getting ready for the new arrival. Some ideas for a unique baby shower include:

1. You can get unique invitations for the shower, something that is more personalized than the regular, store bought kind. Tiny Prints has cute baby shower invitations.
2. If you know the name of the baby, you can put it on the cake and decorations.
3. Play some fun games. I like the seek and find game where you look for the baby related words.
4. Give away some good prizes to the winners.
5. Have each guest bring a pack of diapers. You could do that for the shower gift itself or in addition to the gift.
6. Pass around a notebook so all the women can write parenting words of wisdom. The mom will look at that many times in the future.
7. Serve foods that are the favorites of the mommy to be. Hopefully it won't be something expensive like lobster!
8. A diaper cake makes a cute centerpiece that is also a great gift! I love all of the diaper cakes that are available now.
9. You could serve drinks in baby bottles that the mom to be keeps.
10. Remember to take many pictures. She will want to remember the shower forever.



About Tiny Prints:

Tiny Prints helps you get together, keep in touch and share your love—one little card at a time. Tiny Prints was started in 2003 by three friends and a dream. With a shared a love of babies and an affinity for beautiful paper, they set out to create a stationery company that would offer the experience of a local boutique with the ease of an online retailer. Specializing in the celebration of all of life's special occasions, we're thrilled to offer a fresh selection of exclusive designs, from birth announcements and baby shower invitations to personal stationery and more, delivered with the best customer service you can find online or in stores.

Stop by the Tiny Prints Blog and follow them on Twitter @TinyPrints to discover news, trends and creative inspiration for social stationery, family celebrations and so much more!

More info: http://www.tinyprints.com/
Join Tiny Prints on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/tinyprints
Follow Tiny Prints on Twitter: http://twitter.com/tinyprints

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.

Flavorful Low-Sodium Family Meals

Everyone knows in the United States we eat too much salt. I try to serve meals with less salt, or at least I try not to add salt. Decreasing salt in your foods doesn't have to mean decreasing taste or making the food bland and boring. There are many ways to jazz up your meals without using a lot of salt. Whether you use tricks like "oven frying" instead of deep frying, sauteing in low-sodium chicken broth instead of oil, or incorporating fun herbs and spices, like Mrs. Dash salt-free seasoning blends into your dishes for extra flavor, you can make your family meals flavorful and appealing!

Mrs. Dash Low-Salt seasonings can help make food delicious, and you will never miss the salt. There are 15 flavors of Mrs. Dash® Salt-Free Seasoning Blends which add delicious taste to everything in your kitchen from seafood to salads, and always with no MSG. Each Mrs. Dash® Seasoning Blend adds unique flavor and is an all-natural blend of 14 natural herbs and spices.

I like Mrs. Dash® Fiesta Lime Seasoning Blend. you can mix 2 tsp. with a large diced tomato, medium mango and small red onion for Mango Salsa. Add to ground beef or chicken to make taco or burrito meat.

It is great for:
• Salsa
• Chicken
• Fish
• Shrimp
• Meats
• Fruits
• Tacos
• Guacamole



Fiesta Lime Fajitas
3 Tbsp. Mrs. Dash® Fiesta Lime Seasoning Blend
2 Tbsp oil, divided
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts or boneless beef sirloin, cut into 1/2 inch strips
1 medium onion, cut into thin strips
1 medium bell pepper (red and/or green), cut into thin strips
1/4 cup water
Directions:
1.Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add meat; cook for 3 minutes until no longer pink. Remove from skillet.
2.In the same skillet, heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Add onion and bell pepper; cook 3 to 5 minutes.
3.Return meat to skillet. Stir in water and Fiesta Lime Seasoning. Cook for 3 minutes until heated through.
4.Spoon into warm tortillas. Serve with toppings, if desired.


Fruity Spinach Salad Recipe
The perfect picnic pick that helps with the recommended daily allowance of 4 – 5 cups of fruits and vegetables. This sweet-yet-savory salad brings together fresh strawberries, kiwi and slivered almonds that’s light and flavorful. Toss with the homemade dressing, flavored with Mrs. Dash® Lemon Pepper Seasoning Blend.
Ingredients:
Salad
1/3 lb. (165g) spinach leaves, washed
1/2 pt. (240mL) fresh strawberries, sliced
1 kiwi, sliced
1 Tbsp. (15mL) slivered almonds
Dressing
1 tsp. (5mL) Mrs. Dash® Lemon Pepper
1 Tbsp. (15mL) SugarTwin® Granulated White
2 Tbsp. (30mL) vegetable oil
2 Tbsp. (30mL) rice vinegar
Directions:
1.Place salad ingredients in attractive bowl.
2.Make dressing by mixing remaining ingredients together.
3.Toss spinach with dressing and serve immediately.

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.

Healthy Smiles



This was my list of five simple things you can do for your child to help keep their smiles healthy and bright
1. Make it a routine to brush their teeth
2. Lead by example
3. Use rewards like stars
4. Let them pick out their toothbrush
5. Praise them

About Trident® Sugar Free Gum
Trident gum has long been a pioneer in providing oral health benefits to consumers. Trident was the first gum brand of its kind to undergo testing in 1967 with studies showing that people who chewed Trident experienced significantly fewer cavities. Trident is available in 11 great-tasting flavors: Original Flavor, Bubble Gum, Spearmint, Tropical Twist, Watermelon Twist, Wild Blueberry Twist, Minty Sweet Twist, Passionberry Twist, Wintergreen, Strawberry Twist and Cinnamon. All flavors can be purchased in 18-piece packs and 54-piece multi-packs (three 18-piece packages).

About Smiles Across America® (SAA)
SAA is a signature program created by Oral Health America, a national non-profit organization dedicated to changing lives by connecting communities with resources to increase access to care, education and advocacy around oral health. SAA improves the health of elementary school students by supporting oral disease prevention services in school-based or school-linked settings, and demonstrating to communities that healthy mouths are integral to overall health. For more information, visit http://www.oralhealthamerica.org.

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. Trident is available in 11 great flavors so kids have lots to choose from!

More tips include:
Brush: Remind children to brush their teeth at least twice a day for two minutes each time, using no more than a pea-size amount of fluoride toothpaste.
Eat: Nutritious foods are an important part of keeping children’s smiles healthy and their teeth strong.
Floss: Have children gently floss once a day to remove food that can get stuck between their teeth and sticky plaque that forms on their teeth. Brushing alone cannot reach all of the surfaces on a tooth.
Avoid: Try to avoid overindulging in sticky and sugary foods. When kids do have a special treat, make sure they brush and floss afterwards.
Routine: Remember to get regular dental check-ups. Have them visit a dentist twice a year to make sure that they are taking good care of their teeth and gums.

You can get coupons for Trident gum.

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.

August 24, 2010

Five Favorite Family Time Ideas

It is important to spend time together as a family. Some of the things we like to do together are the following:

1. Family game night
2. Family movie night at home
3. Go swimming together
4. Go to the library together
5. Go to a movie together

My son loves legos, and he has been asking for Ramses Pyramid. Legos has ten new games.

1) Monster 4: Night has fallen in the graveyard and the monsters have come out to play with the skeletons. The first to get four of their monsters in a row wins. But keep an eye out for the spider jumping in and scaring you off! A clever and exciting game for 2-4 players.

2) Lava Dragon: Prove you are the bravest knight of all by being the first one to summon the dragon from the top of the volcano. Avoid the lava and block your opponents as you climb to victory. With the LEGO® Dice no two games of Lava Dragon are ever the same. For 2-4 players.

3) Pirate Code: Who can be the most sneaky pirate of them all? Guess the other players’ secret codes before they discover yours and become the pirate captain. A game of logic and luck, secrets and treasures for 2 to 4 players.

4) Minotaurus: The mighty Minotaur, a mythical creature, protects a secret temple hidden deep inside a labyrinth. Be the first to lead your heroes to the temple, avoiding the Minotaur and cleverly placing walls to block your opponents. Clear and simple rules make this game great fun for the whole family. For 2-4 players.

5) Creationary: Test your imagination, creativity, building and guessing skills! Roll the LEGO® Dice to select one of four exciting building categories: vehicles, buildings, nature or things. With three levels of difficulty you can show off your building skills, while the others guess what you are creating. A great game for family and friends to test your imagination, creativity, building and guessing skills to the max. For 3-8 players.

6) Harry Potter™ Hogwarts™: Between the moving staircases and secret passages at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, it can be tricky to find your way around. Be the first to successfully navigate the magical castle to collect all your homework items and get back to your common room! A fun and challenging family game for 2–4 players.

7) Magikus: Be the first to cast the magic spell in the cauldron! With the help of the owl you must be the first to collect the four special ingredients from the shelves. Steal ingredients from your opponents to slow them down and help you win the game. A simple yet extremely engaging game for 2-4 players.

8) Race 3000: Do you have what it takes to cross the finish line first and win the trophy? Use shortcuts, overtake or turbo boost past your opponents to get in front and change lanes to avoid the oil slicks in your way. The LEGO® Dice brings a new twist on a classic racing game for 2-4 players.

9) Robo Champ: There is a contest at the robot factory. The first to build a robot with all the correct color parts will win this year’s trophy and be named the Robo Champ. If someone takes a part you need, you may have to steal it back to achieve victory. A fast and fun game to play again and again for 2-3 players.

10) Ramses Pyramid: The Mummy King Ramses is planning on conquering all of Egypt with his army of mummies! Unlock the crystal coded layers to climb to the top of the pyramid and defeat the Mummy King, taking his crown and the treasures s within. A family game of memory, skill and cunning. Complete against each other or take on the Mummy King together! Created in cooperation with Reiner Knizia, a multi award-winning game designer. For 2-4 players.

You can see more about their new games here.

I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and LEGO blogging program, making me eligible to get a prize pack. For more information on how you can participate, click here.