Wednesday, March 28, 2012

E's First Bite

E had her first bite of rice cereal tonight!  How many times have I said that my kids grow up too fast?

 Getting ready

 Her first bite


A Happy Baby!

This Seasons Biggest Blow-out Sale!

Check out this deal I found.  74% off Australian Style Winter Boots.  They look super cute and they are a great price.  You might get a little wear now (depending on where you live) and you could always save them! Let me know what you think.

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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Old School Fun with Chick-fil-A & Giveaway

 *** Giveaway Now Closed ***
Congratulations to LC!

The new Nutritious Chick-fil-A Kid's Meals are going to help fuel active family fun!  You can now get grilled nuggets and Buddy Fruits Pure Blended Fruit to go applesauce as options in a kid's meal.  Spring is here and what better way to promote an active lifestyle, and enjoy the great outdoors than with some old school games for your family to enjoy.  The Old School Fun blog app is now available with classic old school games for the family and a fun throwback quiz!  Check it out below.

Just so you know, I am a Disco-Dynamo!

Now, onto the giveaway!  One of you will win three Free Chick-fil-A Kid's meals!

Mandatory Entry:  Take the "Old School Fun Quiz" and share your results in the comments below or share your favorite old school activities from the blog app.  Please be sure and leave your email so I can contact you if you win!

Extra Entries
, leave a separate comment for each extra entry.  As you can see, there are lots of extra entry opportunities!

1.  Follow me on google friend (2 entries)
2.  Follow my google+ page  (2 entries)
3.  Follow my facebook page (2 entries)
4.  Follow Chick-fil-A on facebook (2 entries)
5.  Enter my A Perfect Pet for Peyton giveaway (2 entries)

Giveaway will end on April 7th at Midnight. Winner will be selected using a random number generator and will have 48 hours to respond.  If there is no response after 48 hours, I will randomly select another winner.  Open to US residents only, no P.O. boxes please.

A Perfect Pet for Peyton Review & Giveaway

*** Giveaway Now Closed ***
Congratulations to Mindi!

Have you ever heard of the Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman?  Well, I have a great book to tell you about that incorporates this idea for children, A Perfect Pet for Peyton by Gary Chapman and Rick Osborne.

About A Perfect Pet for Peyton
This wonderfully imaginative children's hardcover book will help children learn the importance of love.  Based on Gary Chapman's highly successful The 5 Love Languages, A Perfect Pet for Peyton tells an entertaining and playful story of five children who each, with the help of Mr. Chapman and the unique pets at his special emporium, discover their own personal love language.  Children and parents alike will experience firsthand the power of the love languages as they cuddle up and spend precious time together reading this book over and over again.

My thoughts:
I really enjoyed reading this book with my family.  My husband and I are both familiar with The Five Love Languages so it was really fun to introduce this concept to my children.

We followed Peyton and Penny as they have an amazing birthday adventure with their family and friends at Mr. Chapman's Perfect Pet Pal Emporium.  On a side note, I found it very humorous that Mr. Chapman in the book really does look like Gary Chapman, one of the authors!  The twins explore the emporium with their three friends: Jayla, Sofia and Kevin.  Each child is matched with their perfect pet pal in the book based on their love language and that of the pet.

The five love languages are Quality Time, Words of Affirmation, Gifts, Physical Touch and Acts of Service.  All the children in the book portray obvious characteristics to represent each corresponding love language.  In real life, I find that my children are more of a mix at this point - meaning, it is not so obvious to pin point one overarching love language as in the story.  Although by doing this within the story each love language is represented extremely well and it gives children a clear picture of the concept.  On another side note, I really enjoyed that the animals have names corresponding with their gifts.  The meanings of names have been really important to David and I when we name our children so I found this pretty cool.

My children really liked having the interactive activities throughout the book: the scavenger hunt for insects and animals alike!

This book is a bit on the lengthy side; it has a lot of meat and depth (and pages) so for really young children it might be difficult for one sitting.  At the end of the book there is The Five Love Languages quiz for kids.  My children enjoyed this quiz; however, mostly they answered yes to all the questions.  This is appropriate on many levels (as we are a mix of different languages) but it can be difficult to pinpoint their top language with this quiz alone.

The illustrations in this book are really amazing and it is just a fun book all around.  I would highly recommend it to all families.

Now, onto the giveaway!  You can win your very own copy of A Perfect Pet for Peyton!

Mandatory Entry:  Follow me on google friend and let me know, that's it!  Please be sure and leave your email so I can contact you if you win! 

Extra Entries
, leave a separate comment for each extra entry.  As you can see, there are lots of extra entry opportunities so don't be shy!

1.  Follow my google+ page (2 extra entries)
2.  Follow my facebook page (2 extra entries)
3.  Follow me on Pinterest (2 extra entries)
4.  Follow me on twitter here (2 extra entries)
5.  Let me know who this book would be for (2 extra entries)

Giveaway will end on April 10th at Midnight.  Winner will be selected using a random number generator and will have 48 hours to respond.  If there is no response, I will randomly select another winner.  Open to US residents only.

Disclosure:  I was blessed to receive my own copy of the book A Perfect Pet for Peyton for review.  All opinions expressed are 100% mine.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Money Saving Mom's Budget Audio Book Review & Blog Tour

Have you ever been to Money Saving Mom's blog?  It is one of my most favorite blogs and I have had her button on my sidebar for forever it seems.  I am privileged to be able to review her new audio book, The Money Saving Mom's Budget by Crystal Paine.

About Crystal Paine: 
Crystal Paine is a wife and homeschooling mom to three young children who has been writing on topics related to frugality for the last five years—and living a frugal, simple, and debt-free life since she was born. Her blog,, is one of the top personal finance blogs on the web averaging over four million pageviews per month. 

My Thoughts:

I really like that the audio book is read by Crystal herself.  Although I have never met her in person, she is very down-to-earth and I feel as though we are friends.  We are "like-minded" on numerous life issues including money!    David and I have been on a cash budgeting system since 2003, and we've read a lot of books on the subject.  This one easily makes it into my top 5 - it's that good.

So here's the scoop.  If you're carrying a lot of debt (like we were), you need to read something like Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover in addition to this book.  The Money Saving Mom's Budget is fantastic for teaching budgeting skills and strategies for reducing your living expenses - a very important financial concept that Total Money Makeover seriously lacks.  But, you won't learn about things like debt snowballs from Crystal.  If you have no idea what I'm talking about, ask me - or read the books!

I like that Crystal outlines how to do this step by baby step.  She helps take the mystery out of budgeting and how one can truly live debt free.  And you won't find academic theories here - Crystal is living it out, proof that it works.  It isn't always easy, and it takes discipline but it can be done.

I found this audio book encouraging personally - to keep pressing on so to speak.  This was actually the first book I have listened to with headphones, and I enjoyed having it in audio form because I could listen to it while picking up my house or preparing dinner.  The chapters are well divided so you can pretty much listen to it as you can one chapter at a time.

The one annoyance I found with the audio format is the repetition of "... a reader" for every included testimonial; but I'm not sure how to do this better.  In the print edition, it is easy to get this information at a glance and move on. 

I like that she mentions that you can be frugal without being miserly.  And I absolutely love the fact that you can choose contentment - Crystal gives a clear and strong reminder of this great choice.  There are numerous nuggets of great advice for those who have been budgeting and living frugally for years and for those who are just getting started.  I highly recommend this book.

Crystal has many helpful videos that you can check out here.  You can purchase your copy of this audio book here

Celebrate with Crystal by entering her iPad2 Giveaway (a GREAT tool to keep track of your budget!) and RSVPing to the Live Webcast Event on 4/5!

One savvy winner will receive:
  • A Brand new iPad2
  • The Money Saving Mom's Budget by Crystal Paine, audio edition
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends 4/4/12. Winner will be announced at The Money Saving Mom's Live Webcast Event on 4/5. Crystal will be hosting an evening of chat, laughter and encouragement - bring your friends! She'll share tips and advice and her husband will be joining her to share how the principles Crystal outlines in her book have dramatically impacted their family life. She'll also be giving away some GREAT prizes: gift certificates, books, and much more!

So grab your copy of The Money Saving Mom®'s Budget and join Crystal and friends on the evening of April 5th for an evening of fun of learning, sharing and encouragement.

Don't miss a moment of the fun. RSVP TODAY and tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 5th!

Want more info about the MSM?
Click here!

Disclosure:  I was blessed to receive an audio copy of The Money Saving Mom's Budget for review.  All opinions are 100% mine.

Our Amaryllis Bulb

Remember our Amaryllis bulb that we put in water two weeks ago?  The kids put the bulb in a jar full of water and put it on a shelf in our garage.

 Setting up, Day 1

 B holding our bulb after 1 week.  The water became a little gross so we did a water change.

C holding our bulb after 2 weeks.
(We might just have to get a bigger jar)

This is my kind of gardening.

Run, Daddy, Run!

David participated in the Capitol 10K yesterday and the kids and I were there to cheer him on.  He did really well, especially considering the fact that it turned out to be a really warm day :)  If you were one of the 23,000 people who participated yesterday, congratulations to you!

 The kids and Daddy before the race.  I know that B and C look grumpy in this picture but they really weren't.

 Downtown Baby E

 And they're off

 David 2nd from the right and his buddy Aaron (in yellow).

David finished in a little over 47 minutes!  I am so proud of you babe :)

Thursday, March 22, 2012


We took some impromptu Bluebonnet photos yesterday so I thought I would share.  One of the many things I love about Texas are the Bluebonnets!

 In the field

 D had a blast!

 E and I

 B (notice the artwork on her cast)

 A and B

 And of course, C

 A Bluebonnet up close.  Beautiful aren't they?

A perfect frolicking picture.

Fun at Old Navy

Yeah, Old Navy!

I am a member of Crowdtap, an online community that allows you to sample products and earn cool rewards for interacting with top brands.  Interested in signing up, just go here.  I was selected to participate in the Old Navy dress sampling.  What does that mean?  It means that a friend and I were able to go to Old Navy and each pick out a dress for free!  How cool is that??

 Our fun coupons...

I took a few pairs of my favorite shoes to try on with the dresses!

I love Old Navy and I was super impressed with their selection of dresses.  They have short dresses, medium dresses and the longer maxi dresses.  They also have solid colors, florals and patterns, stripes and much more.  I felt like they had a dress for everyone no matter what your taste, style or body type.

One row of shorter style dresses!

And some of the maxi dresses!

 My friend and her dresses.

 Me and my selections...

We also tried on several of their leggings, loved them!  These would be a must for me with a shorter style dress.

 Great color

This is a great example of an almost perfect but not quite.  I loved this color and the style of the top of this dress but the length and cut in the middle didn't work for my body type.  If only this was just a top it would be super cute on me!

 I really liked this one on my friend.  The color is great and the detail on the top is subtle yet cute.

 My friend felt like a dancer in this dress.  

 Another great example of an almost great.  This dress looked great on the top but again the length and cut in the middle just didn't look right on my friend.

 All the dresses I tried on, 16 to be exact :)

The winners!  Our new dresses.  

I picked the Women's Chiffon Tie-Front Maxi Dress in Anjou Pear.  What do you think?

A big thanks to both Crowdtap and Old Navy for this sampling opportunity!  And a big thanks to Alicia and Chad who were awesome at the Old Navy we visited!  I was blessed to receive an Old Navy dress of my choice.  All opinions expressed are 100% mine.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


B has been having a great time having her family and friends sign her cast.  It is actually quite a piece of artwork right now.  Last weekend we were able to visit Great Grandma (which is always fun) and have her sign the cast.  Here are some fun pictures!  Three generations are pictured below.

 Great Grandma's autograph

 E saying hello (she likes to fly)

 My girls

 With me!  The girls bench

And the boys

Shave Well Mirror Review & Giveaway

Have you heard of Shave Well?  They make a mirror that is currently #1 selling shower mirror on

Product Description:   "A close, comfortable shave requires a lot of moisture. What better place to get wet than in the shower! Simply by its unique design, The Shave Well Company TRULY FOG FREE mirror will change the way you feel about shaving in the shower."

So, how Does It Work?  "To get that truly fog-free reflection with your Shave Well mirror, hold it under the shower stream for a few seconds to “warm it up” right before you shave.  The Shave Well Company shower mirror is fog free simply by design! In the few seconds you hold it under the shower spray the temperature of the moist air and the mirror equalize to create a long lasting, truly fog free image for the duration of your shower. No more temperature difference - no more fog."

The fog free mirror!

This mirror is great for both him and her!  Shaving for him and for her - a shower mirror is a great tool for makeup removal and exfoliating, and useful for making sure those under-arms are cleanly shaven.  Exfoliating your face is a healthy way to remove dead skin and promote new cell turnover!  Sounds like a plus to me! 

My new mirror

So, what do I think?  I really like this mirror.  It is a great size.  It doesn't take up too much room, is handy to have, and is easy to hold!  My husband does not shave in the shower (although, maybe now he will try it!) so this mirror is mainly for me.  I like having it available for when I shave harder to reach areas and when I just want to look in the mirror.  I think this would be a great gift for boys and girls alike who are first learning to shave!  If I had has this mirror back then I probably would have gotten fewer nicks.

Okay and a super cool fact that I have to include.  "The Shave Well mirror is packaged and warehoused at Sunshine Industries in TN.  Sunshine Industries provides long-term sheltered employment to individuals with developmental disabilities.  Employees are paid on a piece rate or hourly basis while they learn job skills and develop good working habits, with an emphasis placed on production and quality control.  Individuals develop self-confidence, independence and a sense of accomplishment."  Love this!

Now, onto the giveaway!  You can win your very own Shave Well Mirror!  Enter using Rafflecopter below.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Send a Flying Card Review

Have you heard of  I found out about it a month ago and I think it is such a fun, unique idea.

What is a Flying Card?  It's a replacement for a greeting or birthday card, but so much better and super fun!  It is a completely customized full-sized plastic disc that will be delivered for you in place of a greeting card or invitation.  No need for an envelope and no packaging, just the Flying Card.  It is a card and a gift, all in one!  You customize the Flying Card with your own message and you can even add a picture/image for free, how awesome is that?

 Check out my Flying Card.

What do I think?  I love it.  I love that it is green, my favorite color.  I love the customization.  Having a Flying Card for my blog is pretty fun.  And my family loves to play frisbee with it :)

 C and I on the back deck, it was pretty sunny out :)

 Mid air!

There are truly so many ways that you could use one of these!  You can check out some of the Best Ways to Use a Flying Card here.  Their ideas include birthdays, military support, new homeowners, kids in college, we miss you, thank you and many more!  Right now you can purchase a Flying Card for just $9.99 (with free shipping), place an order here.  Check out their facebook page and follow them on twitter.  And you can also join their mailing lists to keep up with all the latest deals.

Disclosure:  I was blessed to receive my personalized flying card in exchange for this review.  All opinions are 100% my own.