Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Our Beach Trip

We took a somewhat spontaneous trip down to the beach last week.  It was so much fun.  The kids have really missed the water and sand on the beach.  Of course, this was E's first trip to the beach (out of womb) and she had a blast.  As much as I don't want to think about it summer is almost over.  Enjoy these photos!

 I love this one of D.
You can see A, B and C behind her.

 E destroying a castle

 C with his water blaster

B had a blast feeding the seagulls.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

My Woolite Sample Share

The samples I received

I was so excited to be selected to participate in a Woolite Sample share through crowdtap!  Basically, I received 10 amazing samples of Woolite Extra Dark Care and my job was to use one and distribute the rest to anyone and let them know about Woolite.  You may know Woolite as a detergent for delicates - it has since expanded to do more!  Woolite Extra Dark Care has been specially formulated to keep your everyday dark clothes looking like new for longer!  It is great for your favorite jeans, a vintage t-shirt, a wool sweater (I haven't been wearing these right now in the Texas heat but this is good to know!), and any clothing that you love.

I decided to pass along the samples to family, friends, a neighbor and even a stranger!  I had a lot of fun giving them out - who doesn't like free things, especially useful ones??

 Sample 1 went to a friend.

 Sample 2 went to family.

 Sample 3 went to family (hi Mom)!

 Sample 4 went to a friend.

 Sample 5 went to a friend.

 Sample 6 went to a friend.

 Sample 7 went to a friend.

 Sample 8 went to a neighbor.

Sample 9 went to a stranger.  
I met a super nice lady in line checking out at Wal-Mart and gave her my last sample.  She is due with her first child in October, the day after E turns 1!  I knew I chose wisely when she told me that her family lives in jeans!  Woohoo, Long Live our jeans :)

Sample 10 of course went to moi!  
I also happen to have a bottle of Woolite Complete.
So, what did I think?  Well, I thought it worked great.  My darks came out looking sharp.  I also really liked the scent.  It wasn't super strong but my clothes smell nice and fresh.

 Some of our darks
So, have you tried Woolite Extra Dark Care?  If so, what do you think?  I would love to here your thoughts.

Disclosure:  Thanks to Woolite and Crowdtap for providing me with this super fun opportunity and all the samples I distributed.  All opinions expressed are 100% my own.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

VTech Switch & Go Dinos Review

Have you heard of VTech Switch & Go Dinos?  We recently received both Tonn The Stegosaurus and T-Don The Pteranodon. 

 Here is C holding up both dinos right before we opened
them!  I think the smile says it all.

They are geared for children ages 3 to 8 years and since I have three kiddos (almost 4) in this age range they have been super fun for our family!  I like that these toys morph from dinosaurs to cars so well allowing for extended creative play.  All my photos on this post are of C but trust me that the girls enjoy playing with them as well :)

 Pteranodon and C

Presto, Chango - now a cool car!

Each dino/car has an LCD screen that can be customized - the kids enjoy changing up the dinos eyes and the drivers faces in the different modes.  And there are some fun sound effects - fun phrases, car noises, dino noises (there is a volume control as well).  Honestly, my kids would love these even without all the sound effects.  I find them creating their own noises as these toys facilitate fun imaginary play.

 Choose a driver!  C and Tonn as a car.

D needs help but A, B and C are able to transform from dino to vehicle without assistance; the transformation process is simple.  I do think that Tonn is slightly harder to transform than T-Don but the difference is minimal.  Bottom line - these dino/cars are engaging, durable, and extremely affordable.  

Disclosure: I have received VTech Switch & Go Dinos to facilitate my review.  All opinions expressed are 100% my own.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Book Review: To Heaven and Back

To Heaven and Back by Mary C. Neal, MD is a gem!  Here is the first-hand true-life account of modern day miracles, experienced by an orthopedic surgeon.  I really appreciate that she is super intelligent and yet, down to earth and really "real" at the same time.  Dr. Neal writes with authenticity, and I found it easy to relate to her as a wife, as a mother, and just as a person.

The headline event is a tragic accident.  While kayaking in South America in 1999, Dr. Neal became pinned under her kayak at the bottom of a waterfall.  Underwater for 14 minutes, Mary experienced something far greater than just resuscitation.  She accounts her time in Heaven, angels she was with and ultimately how she was informed that it was not her time and returned to her body.

Dr. Neal does a great job of chronicling her accident and her experiences prior and afterwards.  I love that she does even more than that though.  She writes with a level of honesty and vulnerability that I really appreciate it.  She discussed her spiritual journey throughout her life.

Be sure to check out Dr. Mary Neal's website here.   There you can learn more about Dr. Neal, watch her recent interviews and share your own miracles as well.

Disclosure: I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.  All opinions expressed are 100% mine.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Please vote for D!

I have entered D into the Chick-fil-A's Best Cow Costume Contest, woohoo!  If you have a moment and wouldn't mind, could you please vote for her here.  I know she (and I) would greatly appreciate it!  If I could caption her photo it would say something like, "D eat all your ice cream.  My pleasure Mommy!"

Friday, July 13, 2012

We Love Chick-fil-A

 The kids and I in costume.
Yes, that is a Christmas tree, Christmas in July theme.

Today was Cow Appreciation Day at Chick-fil-A!  Our family had a blast celebrating.  We went to Chick-fil-A for breakfast (just the kiddos and I) and our whole family made it for dinner.  BTW, I called and made sure that this was ok.  I didn't want to go twice if it was frowned upon.

Here are some pictures from today!

 D is mooing...

 Handsome C waiting for his food.

 Cow Baby E

 Daddy feeding E

Daddy and C both wore signs that said Eat Mor Chikin.  I made them with felt.  I am actually pretty proud of them.  They were super easy to make and they looked great.

 E and I

 A dressed as a heart cow

 B was her twin

 Still happy...


 Even "Cow"boys love ice cream

And it is always fun to meet friends at Chick-fil-A, especially friends who will dress up with you :)

Etsy Spotlight: WhataChicBaby & Giveaway

Have you heard of WhataChicBaby?  Jenn is the owner and she makes amazing little girls dresses, hair bows, headbands, baby onesies, tutus, wall decor, blankets, nap mats, painted wall letters and wall art!  Her business started by accident when her sister-in-law was pregnant and she started shopping for letters to place above her crib.  She found them but they were extremely expensive.  Jenn, being the crafty person she is, made her some.  Once every one saw the letters before she knew it, Jenn had started a business.  WhataChicBaby has grown by word of mouth and I am happy to present it to the bloggy world so to speak.  From one fellow Texan to another, I love your shop Jenn!  Take a look at a few of her items...

 Aren't these letters adorable?

Or how about this more feminine option?

Check out this University of Texas hair bow!
I love it :) And I am sure it has nothing to do with the fact that I graduated from UT.

Or what about this adorable stacked hair bow with pink ombre zebra print?  Jenn can make a matching tutu, how cute is that?  I also love that you can choose your preference of alligator clips or barrettes.

 And this baby girl tutu onesie, I think E might have to have this!

 Jenn even makes flower girl tutu dresses.  These are so pretty and fun.

 And I saw this owl burp cloth and couldn't help but mention it, so cute.

I think you get the idea.  Jenn is super talented and she makes super cute items for extremely reasonable prices.  Check out her etsy shop now - it will be hard to pick a favorite!

Now, onto the giveaway!  Jenn has graciously agreed to provide one of you with a bow of your choice (up to $8 value).  Please enter the Rafflecopter form below.  Good Luck!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Butterfly Snack Bags

Today we had a lot of fun with our snacks.  When I saw this idea on Pinterest I just knew we would do this.  Check out our butterfly snack bags made using things we had around the house:  clothespins, markers, eye stickers, pipe cleaners, snack size ziplocs, and grapes and gold fish!

 First the kids markered their clothespins.  

Paint would have been a lot of fun too but I chose to keep it pretty simple.  Next, they picked out their eyes from a huge sticker sheet that I picked up at a yard sale.  I think I have over 500 eyes and I payed a nickel!  Then they chose their pipe cleaners and we made antennae.  I assembled the snack bags, we clipped on their butterflies and voila!

 And of course, it was almost as fun eating them as it was making them!

A bit excited.

My Happy Place & Giveaway

Do You like gummi bears?  The Happy World of Haribo, makers of the original fruity, chewy, tasty gummi bears, wants the world to find its happy place-no matter where that place is.  So, I started thinking, where is my happy place? And you know what, I have lots!  I really like going to a ball game with my family, or curling up and reading a good book (almost anywhere!).  I like meeting with my small group on Sunday afternoons and living life together - the good, the bad, and the "real".  The beach makes me really happy!  So, what are some of your happy places?

Would you like to connect with Haribo yourself, find them on facebook here!

Now, onto the giveaway!  I have 10 vouchers for free bags of delicious Haribo Gold-Bears - now doesn't that make you happy!  2 winners will receive 5 vouchers each - enter the giveaway below - good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure:  Thanks so much to Haribo for sponsoring this giveaway and providing me with my own bag of Gold-Bears!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Purex Giveaway

 *** Giveaway Now Closed ***
Congratulations to debijackson, JC and Jenny!
Do you remember Purex's Let's Be Honest campaign?  There are short video vignettes sharing honest moments that reflect the ironic truths of everyday Life, Laundry, and Whatever!  I think my two favorite Let's Be honest videos are Hamper and Deep Clean in that order.  As a Mom to five young kiddos I can relate the most to those two!

Now, onto the giveaway!  I have 3 free product coupons to giveaway to 3 winners.  Each winner will receive a coupon for a Free bottle of new Purex Triple Action detergent up to $6.00 (expires on 12/31/2013).

Mandatory Entry:  This is pretty simple.  Go here to watch the Let's Be Honest videos.  There are several of them but they are all super short so there isn't a huge time commitment here.  Come back here and let me know which one is your favorite.  That's it.  Please be sure and leave your email so I can contact you if you win!

Like, share and retweet your favorite one for additional entries, see below!

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 (1 extra entry)
2.  Follow my facebook page (1 extra entry)
3.  Follow me on google friend (1 extra entry)
4.  Like your favorite video after viewing (1 extra entry)
5.  Share your favorite video (1 extra entry)
6.  Follow me on twitter here (1 extra entry)
7.  Retweet your favorite video (1 extra entry)

Giveaway will end on July 15th 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 received these coupons to giveaway as a member of the Purex Insiders program.  A big thanks to Purex for sponsoring this giveaway!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Get Ready

This is your friendly reminder that next week (July 13th) is Cow Appreciation Day!  It is time to prepare :)  I think E is ready.  What do you think?

And A, B, C, and D got a new roommate!  Yes, E moved into their room.  David is currently in the process of making bunk bed #2 so it is a bit tight in the room right now with the pack and play but it won't be long.

Kids Room

And a pretty fireworks picture!