Wednesday, August 31, 2011

{Blog Help Series - Blogging Blocks Part One: "But I'm Not An Expert"}

Sometimes whether you are just getting started or even if you have been blogging for a while, there are some "roadblocks" that can get in your way.  We've decided to begin our Blog Help Series with some of the things that can get in your way and prevent you from blogging or even getting started.

Blogging Blocks - Part One: "But I'm Not An Expert."

Unless you're writing a small family blog, feeling unqualified to blog because you aren't an "expert" is a common roadblock.  This is especially true for new bloggers, but more experienced bloggers run into this one as well.  In fact, we ran into this when we decided to do this "how to" series.

Monday, August 29, 2011

{Fooz kids}

Fooz Kids Happy Kids are Fooz Kids
Thank you to Fooz Kids for providing me with an All-In-One pack to review. The opinions I’ve expressed here are solely my own and represent my honest viewpoint.

As the parents of three kids my husband and I have had the conversation about whether or not our kids should be on the internet, and if so how much? We clearly have both agreed that we feel it is ok to allow them on the internet to play games, activities and more. I have always been concerned about them on the internet and the content they might come across. Another concern we have had is limiting their access to just an hour or two per week. For the last week or so we have been using Fooz Kids.

{Coffee-mate Natural Bliss Creamer Giveaway}

With so many things going on in the mornings one thing I enjoy for just me is my coffee. I have always loved coffee and try to enjoy it as much as possible. But a bad cup of coffee to me means no creamer.I can not drink my coffee without creamer and have always loved Coffee-mate creamers. My favorite has always been the French Vanilla. It makes my coffee taste so yummy! I was very excited to learn that Coffee-mate is adding some new ones to their collection. The Coffee-mate Natural Bliss Creamers are all natural and made with no artificial ingredients. They are made with milk, cream, sugar and natural flavors. I never really gave much thought to what was in my creamer, but the idea of all natural sounds great and is a great reason to switch. Right now there are three flavors available. Sweet Cream, Vanilla and Caramel.

{Hanes ComfortBlend EcoSmart® T-shirts Family Pack Giveaway}5 Winners

We wanted to let our readers know about a new program where they can earn cash for schools—such an important subject right now. As back to school also means Back to Box Tops, anyone with children in grades K-8 likely participates in Box Tops for Education® and has probably clipped their share of Box Tops. Now, they can put down those scissors, and learn about Hanes4Education – a whole new way to earn Box Tops every time your school orders printed shirts.

{Juice Reboot - Part Two: I Have Begun to Juice}

If you read my last post, you will understand my reasons for a juice reboot - or maybe you won't.  I think Jennette is still convinced that I'm completely crazy, lol.  And I think I actually might be because I'm truly getting excited over juicing.

After an ordeal with tracking down the juicer that we wanted (It's the Breville Juice Fountain), we have finally gotten it.  I hope the Breville people thank the maker of the "Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead" documentary because their juicers are sold out just about everywhere!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

{Monday Giveaway Link-up 8/29}

Link up as many as you like. Find and list great giveaways. Check back every Monday for a fresh linky.We'd love it if you could help get the word out about our linky by tweeting{Tweet Button, right side bottom of post:}.Post Giveaway item and end date. Anything other than giveaways will be deleted! Have a wonderful week everyone!

Friday, August 26, 2011

{Aurora Softy Soakers Giveaway}

If you have read our blog then you may have read some of our reviews on Aurora toys. We have always loved their products and all my kids do. My kids love their YooHoo and Friends and Milly the Pinkest Kitten. And right now they are celebrating their 30th Anniversary this year, and are releasing a plush collection. These however are not regular plush toys. They actually grow when placed in water. The first in the collection is the Fanta-Sea assortment. This collection will include Dolphin, Seahorse, Turtle, Hammerhead Shark, Octopus and alligator.

{Back to School Book Review The Adventures of Everyday Geniuses children’s series}

My oldest daughter loves to read. She can always be found with a book in her hand. So for this post I thought I would share her thoughts on the books from The Adventures of Everyday Geniuses children’s series. She has the four of them and could not wait to read them.

If You're So Smart, How Come You Can't Spell Mississippi?
I liked this book because she is a very curious girl. She seems to like finding out facts. I thought it was funny that her smart dad couldn't spell Mississippi. She was very surprised. I really enjoyed reading this book!

Stacey Coolidge's Fancy Smancy Cursive Writing
I thought the book was very interesting. I have had that feeling of being left out. In the end she learns some lessons and finds a way to be more confident. It is a great book on things that most kids have been through.

Last to Finish
I liked this book because I remember when my 3rd grade teacher made us do 30 multiplication problems in 60 seconds. I was always good in math and terrible when timed. I was totally last to finish! That is the same situation that Max is in. It's funny how you can struggle with different things that you can also be good at. Another really good book.

Mrs. Gorski , I think I have the Wiggle Fidgets
I really like this because I can totally relate to it. I have been distracted many times by things in school. I also think the reminder cards are a great idea .

For more information on any of the four books in the series, Last to Finish: A Story about the Smartest Boy in Math Class, Mrs. Gorski, I Think I Have the Wiggle Fidgets, If You’re So Smart, How Come You Can’t Spell Mississippi?, or Stacey Coolidge’s Fancy-Smancy Cursive Handwriting, please visit their website,

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{Funrise Toys Gazillion Bubble Hurricane Giveaway}

One thing that I know my kids will always enjoy is bubbles! My kids can literally blow and play with bubbles for hours. Bubbles are something I always have on hand for the kids to play with. And they have so much fun when we love to use them for Birthdays, play-dates and more. But did you know your kids could be enjoying bubbles in the most extreme way? With the Gazillion Bubble Hurricane from Funrise Toys they totally could be. My kids have had so much fun with it. They dance and play in the bubbles and have a total blast! They now can effortlessly make tons of bubbles. The Gazillion Bubble Hurricane uses motorized rotating bubble wands, it is battery operated and comes with an 8oz bottle of bubble solution. It is easily refillable and is a durable toy! They have even more bubble machines and products that my kids would love to have! Visit Funrise Toys now and see all the fun toys they have.

{Organically Cute Baby Bib Pack Giveaway}

Moms or Moms to be if you are trying to figure out the perfect bib that lasts and is reasonably priced then look no further…. My daughter Anna and I have been playing with bibs from . All I can say is WOW! These bibs have snaps on them rather than the normal Velcro. They have 2 different size adjustments so they can grow with your baby! My daughter is great at putting things to the test. At 5 months old she decided she was tired of baby food and being fed. She is now 8 months old and eats what we eat and feeds herself.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

{Social Parade Follow on Friday 8/26 }Blog Hop + Facebook Pages

Social Parade Follow on Friday Blog-Hop is a weekly link-up hosted by Smart and Trendy Moms . We created it for socializing and to get new followers, subscribers, readers without feeling overwhelmed. Every week will be a new link-up that will focus on following blogs.

{Lovemode $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway}

I totally love shopping! I mean who doesn't? I cannot think of a better way to spend some alone mommy time then shopping. As a super busy mom of three it is rare that I get to shop for myself or the kids alone. Often I am doing it online.Which really works out cause I just found a great affordable place to shop for cute and trendy juniors clothes. It is Lovemode! They rock it with their affordable prices on some of the latest trends and fashion. I totally loved their selection and the fact that I can also get something for my oldest daughter there is awesome!

{Dora the Explorer: Dora’s Ballet Adventures on DVD}

My oldest daughter always loved Dora, she would sing and dance and mimic everything Dora did! But now she is 11 and my 3 and 5 year love Dora even more then she did. They will often be found in front of the tv watching her episodes over and over again. Even as a mom I can appreciate a good Dora episode. She always has a good message and I love that my kids love her! One of their newest favorite Dora DVDs is  Dora’s Ballet Adventures. This is such a fun DVD that your kids will love, mine sure do! They love this DVD that has some of Doras dancing episodes. All the episodes are really fun and sure to please any Dora fan!

Pep Boys $50 Gift Card Giveaway

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Zimmerman Advertising for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.
As a mom of three kids we spend a lot of time in the car. From sport practices, to errands, play dates and more. I swear I spend more time in my car then I do anywhere else. Our family car is an essential part of our lives and it is what keeps us on the move. And now with two of my kids in two different schools I am running around more then ever. When my car is down or in the shop , everyone in our family suffers. That got me thinking about how reliable my car is.

Monday, August 22, 2011

{UPrinting set of 250 Flyers} Giveaway

UPrinting has always been my go to place for my printing needs. I have always loved the quality of their products and am super happy to work with them again! I have used them for business cards, thank you cards and more. My husband swears by them for his business card needs. Our orders always arrive quickly and they always look amazing! Right now UPrinting is going to give one STM reader 250 of their flyers. Their Flyers can be used for so many things, like Party Flyers, Business needs and more. You can have them Print Flyers  for anything you need and I am sure you will be happy!  They come in thick, 14 pt. glossy card stock and you can choose between 2 sizes: 4.25" x 5.5" and 4" x 6" front print only!

{Paper Jamz Pro Mic, Drum and Guitar}

My kids have not had more fun with an item as they do with their Paper Jamz. Their kid friendly fun products make it so easy for your kid to be a rock star. We were able to review the drums, pro mic as well as the guitar. All are made really great and durable and make for hours of fun. My kids really had fun with the mic. It comes with 2 bulit in songs as well as settings for Chorus, Perfect Pitch and more. My kids were not born with a singers voice but with the Pro Mic they are singing and having more fun then ever before. They can also add songs to it with the Paper Jamz Pro app.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

{Monday Giveaway Link-up 8/22}

Link up as many as you like. Find and list great giveaways. Check back every Monday for a fresh linky.We'd love it if you could help get the word out about our linky by tweeting{Tweet Button, right side bottom of post:}.Post Giveaway item and end date. Anything other than giveaways will be deleted! Have a wonderful week everyone!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

{Social Parade Follow on Friday 8/19 }Blog Hop + Facebook Pages

Social Parade Follow on Friday Blog-Hop is a weekly link-up hosted by Smart and Trendy Moms . We created it for socializing and to get new followers, subscribers, readers without feeling overwhelmed. Every week will be a new link-up that will focus on following blogs.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

{Hey Arnold!: Season One on DVD}

My kids all love cartoons and they enjoy just about everything. When I learned that Hey Arnold would be releasing their season one on DVD I knew my kids would love it! My kids were not around when Hey Arnold original aired so they were excited to watch something new that they have never heard of. My older kids really enjoyed watching it and so did my husband! 

{VeggieTales® Princess and the Pop Star on DVD}

My kids have always loved the VeggieTales®. They have so much fun with each and every movie. I really love them because of how family friendly each movie is. They have many funny and heart warming stories that are perfect for even the youngest of kids. The newest VeggieTales® Movie to hit the shelves will be VeggieTales®: Princess and the Pop Star, available on DVD at Christian retailers August 13th and everywhere August 16th. My kids really loved this movie but my girls did especially! They had so much fun listening to the music and watching the movie. Princess Poppyseed secretly switches lives with her favorite pop singer Vanna Banana. Eventually both girls discover they were unique and special just the way they were. It definitely sends a great message to girls of all ages!

Monday, August 15, 2011

{Blue Bunny Personals Ice Cream Party}

Having fun with my friends as a mom is something I rarely treat myself to. The time just does not allow me to do it as much as I used to. I love getting together with my girlfriends and catching up. Recently I had the opportunity to have a Blue Bunny Personals Ice Cream Party with a few of my girlfriends. I mean how could I say no to a ice cream party. The ice cream gave me the perfect reason to have a get together. I chose to recieve the Banana Split Personals® for our party. I gathered a few friends and was ready to rock the ice cream. We had a blast testing them out and we all loved them. I was also able to pick up a few other Blue Bunny ice cream treats for the party as well. Each quest received bunny bucks to take home and they were thrilled!

{Civiballs on Cool Math}

Have you ever been looking for something for the kids to do to occupy them for a few minutes, without just letting them sit down in front of the TV?  Cool Math has lots of neat learning games on it. It's one of the sites that the kids have been allowed to play in their classrooms during free time - so I guess you could call it teacher approved.
One of our favorite games on the site is called Civiballs.  It's a game with balls that are hanging from chains.  The kids are supposed to make the balls fall into the correct colored baskets by cutting the ropes to make the balls fall, roll, or bump into each other.  You have to get the correct order and when cutting the chains you even have to time it right.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

{Monday Giveaway Link-up 8/15}

Link up as many as you like. Find and list great giveaways. Check back every Monday for a fresh linky.We'd love it if you could help get the word out about our linky by tweeting{Tweet Button, right side bottom of post:}.Post Giveaway item and end date. Anything other than giveaways will be deleted! Have a wonderful week everyone!

Friday, August 12, 2011

{Blog Help Series - Introduction}

Over the last couple of years, Jennette and I have discovered some blog strategies that work for us, researched a lot about the tech part of blogging, and found some ways around some of the metal blocks that can get in your way when getting your blog up and going. 

We don't mean to suggest we are in anyway experts, but we would like to share what we have learned to try to help other mom bloggers avoid some of the trial and error that we went through (Ask Jennette about the panic-filled "WHAT DID YOU DO?" emails and calls during a couple of major template revisions.  But don't tell her about the time when I messed up the entire template and couldn't find the back up, lol)

Thursday, August 11, 2011

{Social Parade Follow on Friday 8/12 }Blog Hop + Facebook Pages

Social Parade Follow on Friday Blog-Hop is a weekly link-up hosted by Smart and Trendy Moms . We created it for socializing and to get new followers, subscribers, readers without feeling overwhelmed. Every week will be a new link-up that will focus on following blogs.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

{Juice Reboot - Yep, I'm gonna try it.}

I am going to be trying a "juice re-boot" - where you eat vegetables and fruits and then drink vegetable/fruit juice.  The idea of the reboot is to rid your body of processed foods that are high in sugars, salt, and fat.  This is not the type of thing that I normally do.  I'm not usually into special diets or things like that, but I'm going to give it a try.

My husband saw a documentary the other night called "Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead."  (Yeah, not a great title, I know.)  It's the story of a guy who was overweight and had health problems.  He goes on a 60 day juice fast (No way am I doing 60 days!)  He looses the weight and improves his health.  He has a chance meeting with another guy who was in a similar situation and encourages him to do the same thing.  He shows him how, helps him set a target goal, and encourages him along the way.  It was very inspirational.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

{The Fox and the Hound & The Fox and the Hound 2 on DVD August 9th}

My kids have loved Disney movies since they were able to watch TV. Most of our movie nights are spent watching a Disney movie and is always something we have really enjoyed. While my kids love newer Disney movies it never surprises me how much they love some of the older Disney movies. I love waiting to find out which ones they will release. I was so excited to learn that the The Fox and the Hound & The Fox and the Hound 2 were going to be released on DVD! The first one originally came out when I was very little but I do remember loving it then. I knew my three kids would love Tod, Copper and the other charecters just as I did. They are the two best friends in the movie. We were able to fit both movies in on our last movie night and I was right my kids loved it! They were all glued to the TV and then could not wait for the 2nd one. I loved seeing the amazing picture quality of the DVDS and am so happy they enjoyed them. It is yet again another Disney movie that will sure be brought out during our movie nights! It is available on August 9th and is available with THE FOX AND THE HOUND & THE FOX AND THE HOUND 2 as a 2-Movie Collection on Blu-ray Hi-Def & DVD Combo Pack in celebration of the 30th Anniversary of the original film. Also there are activity sheets for the kids. Just click the image to get them!

{Soap Hope}

Soap Hope has all natural high quality products including soap, cosmetics, bath and body products, household and laundry items and more.
We got to sample several different products and were happy with everything we tried.  We especially loved the Indigo Wild Zum Bar Soap in Eucalyptus and the Pangea Organics Balancing Oil.

Monday, August 8, 2011

{Back to School Shopping - With Printable}

It's almost time for the kids to head back to school. My kids have grown quite a bit and need to do some serious clothes shopping this year.  I always try to fit lessons into the activities that we do and back to school shopping is no exception.  As soon as the kids were old enough to understand addition, I started involving them in making decisions about how to spend their school budget.

Friday, August 5, 2011

{Family Movie Night movie, Who Is Simon Miller? August 6th at 8/7c on NBC}

From P&G comes another great Family Night Movie that your family will love. My family was able to view a pre-screening of Who is Simon Miller? and we really loved it. It is about an average family who's dad has not a so average secret. He is secretly working as a spy. After disappearing the whole family sets out to find him. The family is determined to find just the right clues to where their dad might be. This movie is action packed with twists and turns along the way. My family really liked this movie and my husband was glued watching it. You can read more about it below and watch the trailer. Be sure to watch Who Is Simon Miller? August 6th at 8/7c on NBC!