Tuesday, December 22, 2009

FedEx Shipping Discount and Promotion


Well, I've done it again this year - waited until the last possible moment to ship my gifts to loved ones far and near! I have great intentions every flippin' year...I purchase the gifts ahead of time, wrap the gifts all pretty on time...even box up the goodies about 10 days before deadline, but then it all goes south from there! What's my procrastination issue...I'm clueless!

Thanks be to God for the FedEx Elves, who bailed out my sorry Santa butt once again!!!! I have now delivered my lovely gifts with all the mailing info to my local FedEx Office location without any additional stress or drama. This holiday season, FedEx offers ways to save time and money with discounts that make FedEx one of the cheapest options this December. If you sign-up on line at www.fedex.com, you can save up to 16% on FedEx Express services and 8% on FedEx Group and Home Delivery. By visiting your local FedEx Office location, shipping with FedEx Group costs 10% less than with UPS...Sweet!

An added holiday perk: If you sign up for a free acount on www.fedex.com, you will be entered to win one of five Apple IPod Touches in a contest they are hosting!

I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Cental on behalf of FedEx and received a gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate.

Monday, December 21, 2009

I was selected to participate in a product review opportunity by SheSpeaks for the luxury Canadian skin care system, Mereadesso Woman. The system consists of the face and neck cleanser ($38.25) , a face and neck toner gel product ($102.00) and a microfiber washcloth ($4.25). The retail value is stated as $144.50 total, plus shipping. Products are now available for purchase in the United States via their online store at:

Prior to beginning this product test I was using a cleanser, a toner pad, serum, eye cream, day cream and night cream - wow, that quite a bit huh? I did a quick tally today and this comes to about $250+ for a 3 month supply. The Mereadesso system compares very favorably with my skin so far, so I would be realizing a savings using the system rather than the variety of products - not to mention the hassle and time! I really find that the cleanser is doing a great job - I had been experiencing a couple of minor break-outs around my mouth before I received my products, but these are clearing up after my first week using the system. I too find it a bit challenging to part with my old expectations of heavier creams and pare it down to just the cleanser and toner gel. I would like to purchase additional cleansing cloths - just one is challenging for twice daily use! I am finding that my skin tone and texture is improving with twice daily use!

My skin has been transformed! I cannot speak well enough of the Mereadesso System - Founder Linda Stephenson is to be congratuated!!! True Story: I have been using the system for about 5 weeks now. Everyone I encounter during this time continually comments on "how well I look" or "how radiant I appear"!!! It's amazing and I recognize that since changing my skin care routine, my skin is smooth, soft, bright, and clear! The system is easy, convenient, pleasant, and helps save time/money. I consider my skin to be an investment and I will be pleased to replenish my Mereadesso products as needed in the future - such an outstanding value!

I would suggest that you purchase additional cleansing cloths (I am ordering an extra 4-5 more) to have a fresh cloth available daily.

If Mèreadesso sounds like it might be interesting to you, you can use discount code shespeaks002 to receive 20% off of your order at www.mereadesso.com, plus free shipping. If anyone decides to try, or has already tried Mèreadesso, let me know--I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

How Far Will You Go To Feed Your Family Healthier?

I LOVE MY VEGGIES....my family, not so much!
*Sigh* We continue our saga of eating healthier, but time commitments and shrinking wallets - not to mention differing tastes create a less-than-friendly environment for healthful and delicious meals at dinner time. Hubs nearly faints at the sight of green vegetables, and the kids aren't impressed with a few others. But now I've discovered a new weapon in the fight for mealtime nutrition:

We have enjoyed Ronzoni pastas, but this is something new and better! It looks and tastes like traditional white pasta, but has the amazing added benefits of calcium and fiber. We tried it recently and the fam really loved it! It's not chewy or gluey and perfect with any sauce or flavor combination you may serve with it. Other benefits for the whole family include lower calories and fat than traditional while pasts, no sodium, preservatives or cholesterol. Visit www.RonzoniSmartTaste.com for get more info.

Ronzoni has also launched a fun and entertaining spoof video about the Smart Taste Super Mom (you know, she's inside all of us!) and our attempts to help our family eat right:

Supermom video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fr_pTWuBDds

www.ronzonismarttaste.com to find out more information about the product

Be sure to check out the $4 rebate offer with purchases for Ronzoni Smart Taste pasta and the Disney/Pixar movie "Up": http://ronzonismarttaste.newworldpasta.com/up/

I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Ronzoni Pasta and received a sample of Ronzoni Smart Taste Pasta to facilitate my review and a $20 thank-you gift certificate.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Inspired Entertaining With Nancy's Appetizers - CONTEST!

Now that the holiday season is in full-swing, I love to host gatherings with friends and family - both large and small - to bring us together and connect. It can be challenging with work, home, family and other social/civic obligations...but I have a friend in my freezer! Nancy's Frozen Appetizers help me provide a lavish spread of delicious treats without any fuss or budget-busting drama! Each is well-made and elegant - quick to warm in the oven or even thaw-and-serve! The Pin Wheels are a family favorite! I hosted a fabulous girls-only make up party this weekend featuring Nancy's Appetizers for snacks, and they were literally "gobbled up" by my appreciative guests - all without any stress or toil! I could relax and enjoy the fun with my guests rather than being in the kitchen cooking and serving.

From cheese soufflés, to mushroom turnovers, crab cakes, petite quiches, and pastry tarts, the Nancy's line serves up a delectable spread that has something for everyone. With the price-point of $4 to $13 per package, they can fit easily with your entertaining budget. Add them to the list of items to stock up on at your local grocery or club store to keep on hand for spontaneous drop-ins! You can find the nearest store to pick up Nancy's or go online to find entertaining tips and recipes at www.Nancys.com.

I am excited to host a blog contest for one lucky winner. Winner will receive a coupon for Free Any one 12 ct Nancy's Frozen Appetizer (expires 4/30/10) to try and enjoy! Please post your comment below with your favorite party planning secret. One entry per person, please. All entries must be received by 12/14/09. Winner will be selected by random drawing from all entries received and notified by email on 12/15/09. If unable to contact, a subsequent entry will be notified. US residents only.

"I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Nancy’s Appetizers and received 2 coupons to facilitate my review and a $20 thank-you gift certificate."

Monday, November 23, 2009

Classic Breakfast Tastes - Now With Fiber

If your family is anything like ours, the holiday crunch-time can be joyous, fun, festive...and HECTIC! It seems like we get up in the morning and don't really "stop" until bedtime. Trying to get the kids out the door for school in the mornings gets just a little more frazzled, and I'm so thankful for breakfast cereals to help us through it.

I've always had a fondness for Kellogg's brand cereals....we buy several boxes every weekly shopping trip! We always grab Froot Loops, Apple Jacks... The kids and I enjoy a bowl for breakfast most every morning, and hubs plus the kids also typically have a snack-bowl before bed at night, too! I feel good about providing my family with tasty options that have good nutrition - now Kellogg provides fiber to the great-tasting cereals my family loves!

Fiber is an essential part of a healthy diet by helping your digestive system remain healthy to absorb other nutrients. My family did a side-by-side bowl taste test between Froot Loops classic and the new version with the added fiber (3g/11% RDA)- It's the same great taste our family loves - with added benefits! AWESOME...

For more information on Kellogg's and the benefits of fiber, visit


I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Kellogg’s and received boxes of Froot Loops and Apple Jacks and a gift certificate to thank me for taking the time to participate

Friday, November 20, 2009

Join me on Twitter! Here's my latest RT for a special deal for your fav tween gal...
$20 discount on super cute create and wear designs...

Tweet This:

Cool gift idea 4 tween girl-Create & wear own designs-Use code ONE20 for $20 Off http://bit.ly/FPO2O #fashionplaytes Pls RT

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Friday, October 23, 2009

H1N1 Flu Combat Kit

Our family is dealing with the nasty H1N1 flu personally this week as our daughter's class experienced a nasty outbreak! Out of her class of 20 5th graders, at least 5 have been diagnosed as confirmed cases by their medical professional with an additonal 5 or more also sick! That 50% of the class out of the classroom with all the symptoms including high fever, aches, sore throat, upset tummies, etc! YUCK!

I'm putting together a kit for our home filled with hand sanitizer, losenges, digital thermometer, pain reliever, etc...I'm also exploring alternatives to enhance our quality of care at home

Have you ever tried homeopathic medicines? Homeopathy is a theraputic method used to help the body rebalance and heal itself using natural substances in micro-doses.

Whether or not you use homeopathic medicines for yourself or your family, I wanted to make you aware that Boiron is introducing three new homeopathic medicines for kids: Children's Oscillococcinum®, Children's Coldcalm Pellets®, Children's Chestal®. Check out their website for great resource info as well as a discount coupon offer:


Best wishes to you and your family for lots of healthful blessings as we all work together to help keep our children and families well during this difficult cold and flu season!


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Listerine Oral Care Challenge

Is your family ready for the onslaught of the "cavity bugs" with all the treat-filled festivities approaching? Halloween, Fall Festivals, and the like are quickly followed by Thanksgiving pies, chocolate turkeys, and lots of candy in stockings!

Our family has accepted the Listerine Oral Care Challenge to help us in the fight for great oral hygiene! I have always the embraced the "show 'em, don't just tell 'em" philosophy regarding good brushing and flossing. The Listerine Challenge also helps arm us with interactive tools and resources for the children on

www.listerinekids.com AND



Tips from Dr. Kanetta Lott, a leading pediatric dentist, includes such insights as well as rewarding healthy behavior! Awesome...we started a monthly calendar with stickers for daily floss, brush, rinse routine accomplishment and I'm very pleased with all our participation - all four of us are taking responsibility for a beautiful, healthy smile!

Our friends at Mom Central and Listerine provided our family with a wonderful assortment of oral care products including the new Listerine Total Care anticavity mouthwash, Listerine Agent Cool Blue tinting rinses, Reach kids brushes, and Reach Access Flosser and disposable heads! These products help motivate and inspire with great tastes and interactive technologies to keep everyone on track for at least twice daily inpsiration! I really LOVE the Listerine Total Care mouthwash...I can sometimes slack off with rinses, but the flavors are good without burn. I can sincerely feel a significant improvement in my plaque along the gumline, too!

The calendar challenge will result in positive dentist visits for everyone, and the added rewards for daily brushing, flossing rinsing goal achievement will inspire the kids...we'll enjoy a day together at Hunsader Farm's Fall Festival as a special treat!

I received assorted products to sample and review from MomCentral and Listerine brand. I have also received a gift certificate to GlobalGiving.org for my review coutesy of Listerine and MomCentral.

Friday, October 9, 2009

"Your Songs" Are Definitely MY SONGS

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I’m just in the mood for something mellow and refined….something groovy and easy on the eyes….

I’m enjoying the latest CD release from Harry Connick, Jr. “Your Songs”, and he transports me to another place and time with many of these wonderful American standards! I enjoy an “me time” to wind down from a hectic day at the office combined with kids, housework, and civic activities – and HCJ’s take on the great ones like “Just the Way You Are”, “Besame Mucho”, and “The Way You Look Tonight” really helps me chill-lax and unwind….

The CD is filled with fun ditties deftly performed by Harry in his iconic smoothness. He’s soooo dreamy….

Other links:
Behind the Scene look at ‘Making of’ the album: http://bit.ly/HCJrVideo
Harry’s website: http://www.harryconnickjr.com/
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/harryconnickjr

Album Tracklisting (Originally performed by):
All The Way (Frank Sinatra)
Just The Way You Are (Billy Joel)
Can’t Help Falling In Love With You (Elvis Presley)
And I Love Her (The Beatles)
(They Long To Be) Close To You (The Carpenters)
Besame Mucho
The Way You Look Tonight
First Time Ever I Saw Your Face (Roberta Flack)
Your Song (Elton John)
Some Enchanted Evening
And I Love You So (Don McLean)
Who Can I Turn To? (Tony Bennett)
Smile (Charlie Chaplin)
Mona Lisa (Nat King Cole)

I would certainly recommend this as a great gift paired with a favorite bottle or box of chocolates – something special and decadent to be a little naughty and nice!

I received a complimentary advance copy of the "Your Songs" CD by Harry Connick, Jr. courtesy of One2One Network for review.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Disney Bliss and Snow White: Premieres October 6th

Wow - daughter Kristen and I received a special treat this weekend when the USPS mailman delivered a preview copy of Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs: Diamond Edition Combo Pack courtesy of One2One Network! The classic story of a beautiful princess and her haunting struggle of good and evil never grows weary - the 1937 animation remains a treasure as the audience sings, cheers, wishes and dreams for their own "happily ever after"!

For the first time in seven years, Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment has reopened their vaults to release "The One That Started It All" and this edition features high-definition Blu-ray as well as the DVD in one package. This premieres tomorrow - Tuesday, October 6th, 2009. This launches their all-new product line, Disney's Diamond Collection with the highest quality and immersive experience to day with lots of extras including a music video, Disneyview expanded viewing experience, Disney Family Plan games for everyone to enjoy, Backstage Disney behind the scenes fun of this legendary tale, and Classic Bonus Features including Dopey's Wild Mine Ride Game, Karoke Sing A Long, Hyperion Studios, Magic Mirror hosting, and more!!! The standard definition version will be released on November 24, 2009.

We had a really special time together cuddled up last night watching the DVD in her room. It was a cozy and genuine mom-daughter time as we laughed and thrilled throughout the movie. We had it on video, but this is far superior.

I highly recommend this new package for every family - a true treasure to add to your collection for years to come! The Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs: Diamond Edition is priced at $39.99 SRP. For more information visit:


I received a complimentary DVD package from One2One Network in appreciation of my reviews.

Friday, October 2, 2009

2009 Community Days at Practically Pikasso Benefits YMCA

I just received the news that my submission was selected to benefit the YMCA of Greater St. Petersburg during the 2009 Community Days Program at Practically Pikasso Ceramic Studio in St. Petersburg! Please support our community's YMCA by visiting and shopping during the 10/4-10/09 event - I'll be coordinating an evening for a group next week...more details to follow!

Below is the list of the organizations we will be supporting for our 2nd annual 2009 Community Days Program!
The below organizations will be a part of our 2009 Community Days. From October 4th-October 10th, the below organizations will be selected from for a donation of 10-20% of all Pikasso sales!

Please visit us between October 4th and 10th to support your favorite organization. When you visit, you will designate where you'd like your donation to go. Share this information with all your friends, and support the local community!

2009 Community Days Organizations:
* K-Life of St. Petersburg
* SPCA of Tampa Bay
* All Children's Hospital Guild Evening Branch
* The American Cancer Society
* YMCA of Greater St. Petersburg

Community Days
1912 4th Street North
St. Petersburg, Florida 33704
October 4-10, 2009

Monday, September 28, 2009

CONTEST: Wendy's High School Heisman Scholarship Awards and Gift Card

My son is now a fresh-person in college, studying at our community college. He achieved the Florida Brightfutures Scholarship which provides considerable assistance, and we're so very proud of his accomplishments! The process can be daunting, but with perseverence - he really pulled his own and got the job done-all the while participating in high school soccer (GO GLADIATORS!, completing his volunteer assignments with the YMCA, and working part-time to help the fam and give himself a few extra $$$$. He seems to be enjoying the rigors of college study with the intention of completing his Associate's Degree at junior college and then moving to a larger state school to earn his Bachelor's in a chosen field....

With college admissions growing more and more selective, the Wendy's High School Heisman program presents a great opportunity to help those students who have managed to balance so much, stand out. This award celebrates high school seniors who excel in academics, athletics, and community involvement; in essence, recognizing them for all of the things they already do. Colleges want to see well-rounded students who demonstrate dedication and commitment, making this program especially relevant and accessible.

High school seniors who have a 3.0 average or higher, participate in a school-sponsored sport and contribute to their community can apply at www.WendysHeisman.com, or a high school educator, guidance counselor, or coach can nominate them. As a little reward, the first 41,100 applicants will receive a free Wendy's gift card in amounts ranging from $5 to $50. One male and one female from each high school will win the award and continue on in competition for state and national awards. Twelve national finalists will participate in Heisman Weekend festivities during an all-expenses-paid trip Dec. 11-13 to New York City. ESPN2 will feature all 12 national finalists during the Wendy's High School Heisman Awards Ceremony, which airs Dec. 13. The Wendy's High School Heisman website will display the names of all applicants and individual school winners on October 22, 2009.

Here's the scoop directly from their website - ACT TODAY SINCE THE DEADLINE FOR APPLICATIONS IS OCTOBER 1:

Criteria and How to Apply
For the past fifteen years, Wendy's Restaurants have teamed up with the Heisman Memorial Trophy Committee to create the Wendy's High School Heisman Award. The award honors both male and female high school students who excel in academics, athletics and student leadership.

Criteria for Application
We want applications from both male and female student athletes who exhibit excellence in the classroom, on the playing field, and within their communities. Eligibility for application is limited exclusively to men and women whose senior year of high school is the 2009–2010 academic year, who have at least a “B” grade average, and participate in at least one of 27 sports. We want to hear from all student athletes who work hard, are dedicated, and have become role models for underclassmen.

The Application Process
A student begins the application process by selecting Apply Now! An account must be created with name, address, and email information. It is here that students establish their own User ID and password, which will be required to log in, as often as needed prior to the deadline, to complete the application.

Once the account is created, the student can launch the online application. At the initial launch, the student must answer eligibility questions.

Eligible students will then proceed to the remaining sections of the application. They will describe their school involvement, athletic participation and leadership, and relate experiences from community involvement activities. In addition, the student must provide an accurate email address of a school official who will log in to review the application and its contents, and confirm its accuracy.

All of this must be done prior to 5:00 p.m., central time, October 1, 2009.

Applicants should plan on submitting their application in September to allow time for the review.
The reviewer must submit by 5:00 p.m., central time, on October 6.
Very Important Notes
Students must remember their User ID and password until October.
Save the application frequently while logged in.
Log out if you leave the computer.
Be assured your personal, private information will not be shared with anyone outside of the Wendy's High School Heisman Program and selection committee.
Security concerns prevent the use of bookmarks to return to pages within the application. It is recommended, however, to bookmark THIS page.
One of the common oversights is failure to submit prior to the deadline. Applications must be completed and submitted no later than 5:00 p.m., central time, on Thursday, October 1. Reviewers must submit their review no later than 5:00 p.m., central time, on Tuesday, October 6, in order for applications to be considered.

You can follow the selection results online at www.wendyshighschoolheisman.com.

I urge you to enter your college-bound candidate today! As a special incentive, I am also running a blog contest FOR A $20 WENDY'S GIFT CARD, COURTESY OF WENDY'S AND MOM CENTRAL:
Please post a comment below about your special High School Heisman candidate and receive an entry. Please be sure to include contact information.

For an extra entry: Follow me on Twitter: @OtterKim
and post a comment indicating that you have and you will receive an additional entry. Maximum 2 entries total per person. I will do a random draw from all eligible entries on October 4, 2009 12:00 midnight. The winner will be contacted for mailing of the prize - must be a US resident. Good luck!

Thank you for participating.

"I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Wendy’s and received a gift certificate to giveaway and to thank me for taking the time to participate."

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Circus Is Coming To Town....

Our Junior Girl Scout troop has reconvened for the school year, and now the girls are planning, voting, budgeting, and finalizing their learning experiences for the year - tickets for the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey® Circus are certainly on top of their list again this year! Our Girl Scout troop worked really hard this spring to sell LOTS of Cookies to raise the $$$!
I was thrilled to tell them that special discounts are now available, and I'm happy to share the code information with my readers...

Feld Entertainment's Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey® live performances provide edge-of-your-seat entertainment for the young and young at heart. Also, Feld Entertainment has created savings offers available by using customer codes for the Mom Central community. These offers enable us to create lifetime memories experiencing the excitement of Ringling Bros. ® with our families!

We enjoyed our Ringling Circus performance locally last winter - the costuming, performers and animal acts are all breath taking! The children were amazed at the incredible music and spectacle! It's a family tradition....

While each touring edition of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey is different, all feature amazing Asian elephants, fascinating tigers, family fun and so many thrills that you will be on the edge of your seat all night!

To enhance your night at the circus, you get two experiences in one. The All Access Pre-Show begins an hour before show time, live on the circus floor. The Pre-Show provides the opportunity for kids to interact with performers, try on costumes, and get up close and personal at The Greatest Show On Earth.

Mom Central is excited to extend the following special family offers; look for the box marked "MC Promotion" when purchasing tickets:

*Offer #1: Get 4 tickets for just $44 by entering the code "MOM" at select ticketing channels. Offer good on all weekday performances, which includes all weekday evening and Friday matinee performances; minimum purchase of 4 tickets required; additional tickets above 4 can be purchased at $11 each.
*Offer #2: All weekend performance tickets will be $4 off the original price.
Offer #3: Get the best Circus Celebrity, Front Row and VIP seats available – We have reserved seats in these sections just for you! Enter the code MOM. No discounts available on these sections.
* Not valid on Circus CelebritySM, Front Row or VIP seats and may not be combined with other offers including special Opening Night pricing. Other fees may apply.

The above offers are good in the following cities:
Denver: September 30 – October 11, 2009
Boston: October 14-18, 2009
St. Louis: October 15-18, 2009
Cleveland: October 21-26, 2009
Rosemont/Chicago: November 5 – 29, 2009 *available for purchase on Sept. 8. 2009
Auburn Hills: November 18-22, 2009
Charlotte: January 27-31, 2010 *available for purchase on Sept. 12, 2009
Atlanta: February 12-21, 2010 *available for purchase on Sept. 12, 2009
Cincinnati: March 10-14, 2010 *available for purchase on Sept. 21, 2009
Dayton: April 29 – May 2, 2010 *available for purchase on Sept. 21, 2009

Shows coming this fall & winter:

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® Presents Over The Top, an all-new live entertainment extravaganza featuring the ultimate tug of war between Ringmaster Chuck Wagner and clown eccentric Tom Dougherty over a magical top hat that controls the circus. When the Ringmaster dons the hat he conjures stupendous spectacles for his circus, like the stunt riding Royal Cossack Cavalry while the clown uses the hat to summon silly and whimsical acts for his circus, such as a cavalry of goats riding on ponies in a Barnyard Bonanza. They continue to top one another until the Ringmaster and clown realize that the magic of the circus is not in the hat but in the hearts of everyone. The show culminates in an amazing display of gigantic glowing rainforest flowers surrounding Chinese acrobats swinging on vines and propelling through the air. Over the Top is two circuses in one providing excitement for the whole family.

Audiences will see nearly 100 animals including flying dogs, Asian elephants that skip, hop, and groove, miniature horses, llamas, pigs, and even a performing porcupine. In a daring feat, the courageous Daniel Raffo stands eye to eye with a pack of powerful Bengal tigers. Circus celebrities help rev-up the motorcycle madness featuring one cycle on a high wire and seven speeding riders in a Globe of Steel. Extraordinary aerial acts fill the arena sky with a rare double-decker trapeze and the Bombastic Bouncers who combine gigantic inner tubes and awe-inspiring acrobatics in a high-energy performance never before seen in America. And with the audience's participation, this circus really goes Over The Top!

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® Presents ZING ZANG ZOOM®: Through the mystery of magic and the mastery of skill, audiences will be spellbound as Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® Presents ZING ZANG ZOOM®, a thrill-filled, mind-blowing circus spectacular where family fun is no illusion.

Magical Zingmaster Alex and his assistant, the alluring Levitytia, lead audiences through a kaleidoscope of color and imagery revealing extraordinary worlds of fantasy, flight and phenomena that celebrates the uplifting spirit of the circus and wards off a cynical Mr. Gravity and his team of "heavies" who try to bring everyone down.

Be mesmerized when a four-ton elephant disappears before your eyes, and a gravity-inducing nemesis transforms across species into a ferocious tiger. Stand in awe as a dazzling trapeze artist performs a perilous, anatomically unimaginable one-arm speed-spin high atop the arena floor, and two formidable, female human cannonballs are blasted through the air in a daring, awe-inspiring display of bravery. Become electrified as the dangerous double wheel of steel, the gasp-inducing high wire and soaring gigantic swings defy both gravity and logic.

Fun-filled magic merges with traditional circus arts to create a world of infinite possibilities where apprentice illusionists levitate their parents with a wave of a wand, and audience spirits keep rising as the high flying circus is (literally) turned upside down. Perhaps the most magical of all, watch in amazement as an incomparable array of exotic animals including a herd of majestic Asian elephants, magnificent Bengal tigers and elegant Arabian and Friesian horses join forces with our human performers to create an experience that will surprise and delight Children of All Ages, rendering us speechless and reminding us that the magic of The Greatest Show On Earth® lives forever in our hearts and imaginations.

To learn more about Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey shows touring the country this year and to find shows in your area, visit the Ringling site at http://www.ringling.com. And don't forget to use the special discount code when purchasing tickets online!

I wrote this review while participating in a blog campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Feld Entertainment. Mom Central sent me a gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Disney On Ice and Ringling Brothers Tours-Discount Tickets

With the onset of fall and winter upon us already, our Girl Scout troop begins their planning for special outings and activities. The girls are at the perfect age (Junior Scouts/ages 10-12) to do research, propose ideas, discuss, plan and budget for their troop's special events and trips.

On top of their list this year will be tickets to attend a local performance of Disney On Ice and the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus. These fabulous family tours are wonderful experiences for children and adults alike that feature excellent value!

The excitement, drama and thrill of Disney On Ice features iconic Disney stories, characters and music teamed with world-class skating. With spectacular ice shows featuring the magic of Disney friends and princesses is pure delight! Featured shows on tour are Disney On Ice Presents Celebrations! and Disney On Ice presents Worlds of Fantasy....

Our friends at Mom Central is extending special family offers, look for the box marked "MC Promotion" when purchasing tickets:

*Offer #1: Get 4 tickets for just $44 by entering the code "MOM" at select ticketing channels. Offer good on all weekday performances, which includes all weekday evening and Friday matinee performances; minimum of 4 tickets required; additional tickets above 4 can be purchased for $11 each.
*Offer #2: All weekend performance tickets will be $4 off the original price.
Offer #3: Get the best Front Row and VIP tickets available - We have reserved seats in the Front Row and VIP sections just for you! No discounts available. Use the code "MOM".
(*Not valid on Front Row or VIP seats or combinable with other offers including opening night offers. Other fees may apply.)

These offers are good in the following cities:
St. Louis: September 3-6, 2009
Chicago: September 8-13, 2009
Sunrise: September 17-20, 2009
Dayton/Cincinnati: September 17-27, 2009
Miami: September 23-27, 2009
Auburn Hills: September 30-October 4, 2009
Charlotte: October 8-11, 2009
Philadelphia: October 14-18, 2009
Atlanta: October 14-18, 2009
Oakland/San Jose: October 14-25, 2009
Fairfax: October 21-25, 2009
Sacramento: October 28-November 1, 2009
Baltimore: October 28-November 1, 2009
Uniondale: November 10-15, 2009
Houston: November 11-15, 2009
NYC: November 17-22, 2009
East Rutherford: November 24-29, 2009
Denver/Broomfield: December 3-13, 2009 (avail for purchase on 9/12/09)
St. Paul: December 9-13, 2009
Los Angeles: December 17-20, 2009
Toronto: December 18-27, 2009
Anaheim: December 22-27, 2009
Philadelphia: December 23-January 3, 2010 (avail for purchase on 10/12/09)
Boston: December 26-29, 2009 (avail for purchase on 9/3/09)
Ontario: December 30-January 3, 2010
Cleveland: January 8-18, 2010 (avail for presale on 10/2/09)

Visit http://disney.go.com/disneyonice/ for more information about the shows.

I wrote this review while participating in a blog campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Feld Entertainment. Mom Central sent me a gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Crazy Cleaning Confessions

I recently entered Kenmore's Crazy Cleaning Confessions Contest at YouTube.com/Kenmore. I described my fascinating take on cleaning including the use of those insane mop-slippers on my wood floors! I also tackle the bathrooms with vengence every week with full military regalia, complete with a commando bucket and work apron/product belt so I don't have to carry loose cleaning supplies! Wow, it takes some creativity to just cope with the routine mess, huh??? I have several Kenmore appliances in full swing use daily at our home - they are truly "workhorses" and I cherish their important contribution to our hectic lifestyle!

Anyway, the entries are funny - check them out at YouTube.com/Kenmore. Beginning September 11, fans can vote for your favorite confession and help three lucky finalists win new Kenmore appliances!!! Kenmore will also donate $5.00 for each video submitted and $.50 for each vote cast to the Jane Goodall Institute's Roots & Shoots Program - which is totally awesome!!! To read more about the rules/regs visit:

These videos are so fun to watch and voting helps support such a worthwhile cause -

Just for fun, share with me about your Crazy Cleaning Confessions -
inquiring minds want to know....
Kenmore Takes the Crazy Out of Cleaning!

I wrote this post while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Kenmore and received a gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate.


Yoplait yogurt is delicious and nutritious at any time - but here's a really fun and cool treat for your fam~
Enjoy your Yoplait Whips! FROZEN.....
I received a "Summer Cool Down" giftbag from MyBlogSpark to have my family try some of the new delectable flavors and innovative summer treat idea. WE LOVE IT! My daughter can't get enough of the frozen yogurt treats in her fav flavors! It's a fun project to do together with no fuss!

Simply take your favorite flavor or two of Yoplait Whips! and pour it in some ice pop molds, then freeze overnight. After a few hours, they are ready to be enjoyed for a tempting frozen treat without the guilt!

Explore the Yoplait website for great info, recipes, and coupons at
I am pleased to announce that Blog Spark is providing me with A GIFT PACKAGE that includes TWO free coupons for Yoplait Whips!, a fun, star shaped freezer mold for 3 frozen treats plus color-changing spoons in a great cooler tote!!! Perfect for a family treat to go....

To enter, simply post a comment on this blog post about your favorite Yoplait Whips! flavor (single or combo style) and include your email addy so I may contact the WINNER to be selected at random. Entries must be received by September 26, 2009, 12 Midnight EST. One entry per person. Must be US resident. I will notify the winner at the email provided to follow up for additional mailing information, courtesy of MyBlogSpark.

GOOD LUCK and that you for participating in the contest!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Act Fast! FishfulThinking Seeking New 1,000 Mom Members

Fishful Thinking is back and looking for NEW Ambassadors!

What you can expect:

The Fishful Thinking program will focus heavily on interactions and activities both online and offline
An increased amount of points earned for each quality Spark Report
New and improved prizing and incentives to reward more Ambassadors for the quality of their involvement
A fresh kit of program materials to distribute in your community
Updated Fishful Thinking content and activities
Timing is customized around an academic calendar to best fit your family’s schedule!
As a reminder, each Fishful Thinking Ambassador must commit to:

Seeking opportunities to share the Fishful Thinking program through online and offline activities
Driving traffic to FishfulThinking.com and other Fishful Thinking content online
Submitting Spark Reports to describe Fishful Thinking activities and interactions
Participating in polls, posting blogs and staying engaged on the Fishful Thinking Portal
Finally, Pepperidge Farm wants to give other mothers a chance to join the program, so we are opening up the community to hold another 1,000 Fishful Thinking Ambassadors! Before the recruitment period becomes public we want to give you an opportunity to help us find the best of the best by extending the invitation to your qualified friends, families and peers. All new Ambassadors will receive a free Welcome Kit filled with marketing materials to help them spread the word about Fishful Thinking.

Space is limited to the first 1,000 mothers who apply and meet the qualifications listed below:

Moms with at least one child at home between ages 4-12
Moms involved in an activity where Fishful Thinking conversations and events will be welcome i.e. PTA, book clubs, women’s group, community volunteer, etc.
Moms who enjoy sharing and connecting with other moms, online and offline.
Encourage your personal contacts to apply today at www.repnation.com/fishfulthinking.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Back to School Giveaways!

Starting this week, Mom Central will begin Back to School Giveaways for some of those items that may not have made the cut, but families would still love to have. Visit them at:
http://www.momcentral.com/ and go directly to the contest site at:


Be sure to visit often and register for them throughout the contest period!
Each week they will post new giveaways for our Mom community and their families!

Three exciting giveaways include:
1. Lexmark Printer: Print out your student's book reports, history essays, and science labs with this top of the line Lexmark printer. Turn in those assignments in top form. Mom and Dad might also appreciate this giveaway as well!
2. Gymboree Gift Card: Keep your little one looking stylish this school year with a gift card to Gymboree. Gymboree carries adorable clothing from newborn sizes all the way up to age 12. As for one of my favorite holidays, their Halloween shop does not disappoint with some of the cutest costumes around!
3. Shred Sled: A great way for your kids to enjoy the autumn weather, the Shred Sled combines the movements of skateboarding and snowboarding together for a unique, fun, and healthy activity for the young—and the young at heart! With four inline wheels and a concave foot deck, the rider also has much more control than a traditional skateboard.

I wrote this review while participating in a blog campaign by Mom Central. Mom Central entered my name in a random drawing to win a gift to thank me for taking the time to participate.

School's In Session! - MSN Homeroom

Wow! Did the summer just fly by or what????
I'll be posting our family's amazing "trip of a lifetime" photo journal from Cabo Mexico later this week! We had a fantastic experience that helped ease us back into reality of back-to-school....

I have already returned to our back-to-school toolkit of tricks and tips to help our family keep on schedule during the school week. This includes pre-setting the kitchen table for self-serve breakfast each morning. We set the table with bowls, glasses, mugs and utensils plus a variety of cold cereals, including Kellogg's Frosted Mini-Wheats. I prepare some fresh fruit toppings in the refrigerator and set the timer on the coffee maker for when we arise in the A.M. It's less stressful and crazed if it's done ahead and our sleepy family gets a healthy breakfast to start the right!

We're already going full speed with school, work, and activities and a new online resource is available to help busy families:

The site is sponsored by Kellogg's Mini-Wheats and offers great online discussions, videos, tips and tools in an interactive and fresh format. I have already scoped out a number of the key topic areas including:
writing, back to school, reading, giving back, attentiveness, learning and memory
via articles, videos, episodes, and community boards

This week's featured article, "Writing as a Process: A Quiz for Young Authors" is informative and relevant. My daughter and I enjoyed learning together as she gears up for Fifth grade and considerable writing assignments for the school year.

Here's hoping each of our children enjoys a busy and successful school year filled with laughter and learning!

I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Kellogg's Frosted Mini-Wheats and received a sample to faciliate my candid review. In addition, Mom Central sent me a gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate!


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Cirque Du Soleil - Saltimbanco Arrives in Tampa

Our family was thrilled to receive tickets courtesy of Cirque Du Soleil and MomCentral to the opening night performance of Cirque Du Soleil Saltimbanco at the St Pete Times Forum in Tampa Florida on June 25. The show was incredible...filled with excitement, suspense, and laughter! The performers never ceased to dazzle and amaze!

My daughter was on the edge of her seat throughout the performance. We even had the special treat of enjoying a smooth and eco-friendly ride from our parking lot to the Forum in the new Eco Taxi Service available throughout the city....they only work for tips!!!

Back to Saltimbanco...you really need to see it to believe it! The ceative costuming and staging help balance the show within the large arena setting. It helps the audience connect with the performance similarly to the Cirque traveling tent shows - I've thoroughly enjoyed these as well.

Highlights of the performance include the fabulous aerialists, clowns that interact with the audience, and the Flamenco-style bolo dancers. it was utterly breathtaking from beginning to end...The show is not to be missed!

Saltimbanco is a Cirque du Soleil signature show inspired by the urban fabric of the metropolis and its colorful inhabitants. Saltimbanco explores the urban experience in all its myriad forms: the people who live there, their idiosyncrasies and likenesses, families and groups, the hustle and bustle of the street and the towering heights of skyscrapers. Between whirlwind and lull, prowess and poetry, Saltimbanco takes spectators on an allegorical and acrobatic journey into the heart of the city. Decidedly baroque in its visual vocabulary, the show's eclectic cast of characters draws spectators into a fanciful, dreamlike world, an imaginary city where diversity is a cause for hope.

Florida performances include:
Lakeland - April 29
Gainesville - May 7
Tallahassee - May 13
Jacksonville - May 20
Sunrise - May 27
Tampa - June 25
Estero - July 8

Contact Cirque for tickets today at www.cirquedusoleil.com or call locally for Forum Box Office at 813-301-2500.

See you at Cirque!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

EA Sports Active - Run and Get It NOW!!!

I was so thrilled to be selected to participate as an EA Sports Active for Wii ambassador! Ammo Marketing provided me with two copies of the game (one to keep and enjoy for our family and one to share with my workout buddy, Kristin O.!) Plus we received a fun water bottle, headband, House Party kit, and gift card for the party! I hosted a fun event for friends and family to try out EA Sports Active....

I've been at it for over a week and I'm all about "Active"! My entire family has created their profiles and we're enjoying earning our trophies, etc. I am truly feelin the burn after a full workout, especially the inline skating - WOW! I have some back and knee challenges, so using the EA Sports Active provides me with an amazing workout that is reasonably low-impact on my body. I can't ask for more - other than to kick my hubs off the TV so I can work out some more!!!

I'll post some updates as I proceed through my 30-day Challenge that began on June 1st!

Visit EA Sports Active at:

Here's some tips from Ammo Marketing/EA Sports:
Here are a few practical steps to help support your success during the 30-Day Challenge:
Write down your primary goal. Be specific: Whether you want to lose fat, tone muscle, or get active, give yourself one major objective for the 30-Day Challenge and put it on paper. Remember to be realistic and set yourself up for success. Trying to lose 30 pounds in 30 days isn’t safe or probable, so examine your goals and make sure they’re in line with what’s healthy.
Schedule your workout time. Plan the date, time, and place of each session in Outlook or your day planner. You'll be less likely to allow meetings or social events to interfere with your workouts. Be sure to block off a big enough chunk to account for any time needed to change your clothes, shower—the forgotten factors that doom workouts.
Share your story, goals, challenges and successes with others. This will help you stay accountable and gain support from your friends, family and community.
Enjoy your second week of the Challenge and don’t forget to stay Active!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

THROWDOWN: Double Daring Book for Girls

It's summer, and we're getting creative here at our house - we are thoroughly enjoying the latest and greatest by Andrea Buchanan and Miriam Peskowitz, The Double-Daring Book for Girls. It's perfect for my daughter Kristen - and her friends...chock full of fun, no-holds-barred ideas and opportunities for girls to explore.

The book is ideal for a hot, summer day to learn about how to start a mother-daughter book club, create paper beads, play dominoes, or even...how to run away and join the circus!!! We've already started planning out our summer evenings and weekends to include many of the amazing activities in this incredible book....

Here's our thrown down challenge to all our readers:

Let's all highlight our hair with Kool-Aid!! (yes, you are reading this correctly, my friend...pull out those 25 cent packages and get colorful!!!) Get colorful, silly and creative with your girl - it's a fun time sharing a wickedly outrageous beauty makeover without a big commitment. We can't wait to tell our friends, "Does she, or doesn't she? Only Mr. Kool-Aid knows for sure!"

What You Need -
Two packages of your favorite unsweetened Kool-Aid color (the longer and darker your hair, the more packets you'll need)
Aluminum Foil
Pipe Cleaner, paintburhs or new toothbrush for application
Shower cap or plastic wrap
Plastic gloves
Mixing bowl

Kool-aid highlights are a great solution for darker hair, which doesn't absorb the Kool-Aid color as dramatically as lighter shades. You'll be applying concentrated amounts of Kool-Aid color to dry strips of hair.
BEWARE: This project is messy and Kool-Aid will stain. Wear an old tee shirt to protect your clothes - have a buddy help you. Or best yet, do each other!

In a medium bowl, mix two packets of unsweetened Kool-Aid with several generous dollops of hair conditioner (about twice as much as you would normally use on your hair. Stir until forms a nice paste with no lumps. For more vibrant color, and to help the dye stick, you can add a teaspoon or two of vinegar.

Grab a small section of hair, and use the pipe cleaner, paintbrush or toothbrush to apply the paste from the root to the tip. Once you have the paste spread on evenly and generously, wrap that section of hair in tin foil and go on to the next section. Once you've done that to all the sections you want to color, use a hair dryer (on low) on foiled sections to bake in the color and dry the hair. Remove the foil when you're done.

You can use toothpaste to remove any staining to skin. Just take a dab of regular toothpaste (no special kind needed) and gently rub it on the stained skin. Rinse and repeat until the stain is gone.

Kristen and I are headed to the pantry to pick out our flavors...ugh, colors....to freak out our "do"...what color are you going to try?

Please comment on my blog to tell us about your Doubling Daring Girly experiences...we can't wait to hear from you! We'll post photos next weekend to share with everyone!

Special thanks to MotherTalk for providing us with a sample copy of the book to enjoy and share with our readers....check out the book at Amazon.com or your local library and book store for lots of great ideas and adventures to share with your special gal!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Go Ask Your Mama!

Mamapedia™ is...

  • For mothers with kids of all ages
  • Questions by moms, answered by moms who’ve been there
  • Over a million answers on everything from Acne to Zoos
  • Easily searchable and browsable
  • Updated daily
  • 100% free

All this and soooo much more....What's not to LOVE????
I have a million questions and less than a million answers about my kids - my guess is you feel about the same, right? I've fallen in love with Mamapedia (http://www.mamapedia.com)!

It's chockablock filled with great info as you search on important topics that I'm wrestling with such as summer camps, insights on teens, and talking with your daughter about sex. Wow - I personally don't have a mother to go to for these types of advise, so this amazing online tool is a tremendous help for me as a parent! There's so many great topics and contributions from mom's just like us! Plus there's relevant reviews and product ideas. It's dynamic and interactive - just like all us Mama's!!! Register for their Mamasource Community to get updates and topical connections with other members in your community - it's so cool!

My most recent search resulted in some fascinating tips and recommendations.
I highly recommend checking out this great resource for your next BIG QUESTION!


Where Did May Go...Summer and CPR!

Wow, I've been having some technical difficulties compounded by a crazy month of end-of-school year madness....I haven't posted in such a long time! Sorry to keep everyone is suspense. Thanks to many of you who reached out to check on me!

Back to business now that the school year has ended and lots of fun summer programs, events and activities are on the horizon. We're planning a few day-trips throughout the summer which will be capped with our amazing once-in-a-lifetime exotic trip to Cabo Mexico in late summer! We' can't wait...

There will be lots of water play activities at the pool and beach, so now is the perfect time to do a lifesaving refresher course....My son, husband and I have certifications but an annual review is very important in an emergency.

The American Heart Association has launched a critical campaign this month (JUNE) to begin the National CPR and AED Awareness Week. I'm pleased to help share this info and raise awareness for everyone to get trained in this life-saving skill.

I was thrilled to learn about a new opportunity for an in-home resource:

If you took a CPR course when your preschooler was a baby, you're overdue for a refresher! Studies have shown that your skills can deteriorate over time - The American Heart Association recommends taking a course every two years, but its at-home CPR Anytime Kit (retail $35) lets you practice in the convenience of your own home and at your schedule! In just 22 minutes, you can learn CPR. The kit comes with an inflatable, reusable mannequin and instructional DVD. There are infant and child/adult kits available.

Mom Central and the American Heart Association provided our family with the CPR Anytime Kit to try at home, and we all took turns practicing and reviewing the information. It was so quick, easy and convenient! I also shared this with our Girl Scout troop to help the girls learn some preliminary basics. It will be great to help my daughter when she is old enough for babysitting in the next couple of years!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

It Starts With A Playground: KaBOOM!

KaBOOM!, a non-profit organization dedicated to finding and creating play spaces within walking distance for every child, has embarked on a nationwide mission to help communities build playspaces. MomCentral has teamed with KaBOOM! to help map online 100,000 playspaces in 100 days. Here's what counts as a playspace: a playground, field, a skate park, roller hockey rink, lake, dog park, community center, basketball court or ice rink - any place where kids can engage in unstructured play for free or a nominal fee. A playspace listing on KaBOOM! consists of an address or cross street and a description, one photo and one rating. It's easy and fun to do on their website or a twitpic from your cellphone!

For every play space entered into the KaBOOM! database on behalf of the Mom Central team, $1 will be donated to Jumpstart, a non-profit that brings at-risk preschool children and caring adults together to improve literacy. Wow!

This will be a great resource for every community member - imagine being able to now go online to the KaBOOM! site and in a few clicks identify a number of fun places to visit when family or friends come to visit or when you go on a vacation to a new location.

Visit their website today at http://playspacefinder.kaboom.org/teams/2761-momcentral to enter a playspace or visit with your little friends!

Amazon Kindle 2 prize package offered again this week!

by alynsen

This week in the KaBOOM! Playspace Finder 100,000 Playspaces in 100 Days campaign, you could win an Amazon Kindle 2 and an autographed copy of Julianne Hough's debut album!

Just as a refresher, if you:

  • Join a team, and
  • Add a valid new playspace (including a photo and a rating)
  • OR complete an existing playspace listing

Before 10 a.m. Eastern time Monday, May 4, then you’ll be entered to win:

  • An autographed copy of Julianne’s debut album
  • AND an Amazon Kindle 2 as well!

.Every playspace you add or complete counts as an entry into the sweepstakes, so the more you add, the better your odds of winning!

Join a team and add playspaces today!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Something New From Ragu~Feed Our Kids Well!

Dinner time can be challenging since I work full-time - creativity can sometimes elude me after many years of the nightly, "Mom....what's for dinner?" yelled across the house the minute I walk in the front door!

A favorite "go to" in my dinner kit toolbox includes Ragu Old World Style Pasta Sauces. Ragu values family time, and the importance of family meal time together. We're a perfect fit! I toss in a home made touch now and then and serve over our favorite pastas with a fresh, green salad and toasted breads for a quick and nutritious meal without a lot of fuss. Our entire family loves it.

Now Ragu has introduced two new flavors of Old World Style sauce - Sweet Tomato Basil and Margherita! MomCentral.com provided me with the opportunity for us to sample these recently. They are readily available at the local grocery stores - great value pricing, especially with a coupon!

Both sauces contain more than a full serving of veggies in every 1/2 cup of sauce and carry the "EAT SMART" logo on the label. The Sweet Tomato Basil tastes like my homemade sauce - smooth with lots of great flavor...sweet but savory, and mellow. The Margherita is a delicious blend of tomatoes, pizza seasonings, and mozzarella cheese - great for homemade pizza-style meals or snacks and this makes the perfect dipping sauce!

Ragu is a part of Unilever brands - don't forget to gather your receipts and submit for the rebate program I posted earlier this month!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Mold and Mildew? X-14 Saves the Day!

We recently finished a huge project of gutting our old master bath and designing a new one complete with a beautiful, new SPA SHOWER! Yes, Mamma is a happy girl!
Thanks to X-14 Mold and Mildew Stain Remover, we'll keep it looking beautiful. Unfortunately, mold and mildew can develop aplenty here in Florida, even with vigilance in cleaning routines...
Like many of you, I'm a busy mom with lots to do and very little time - X-14 The Bathroom X-pert Mold & Mildew Stain Remover is a quick way to combat these dirty little nasties!

MomCental.com and X-14 Mold and Mildew Stain Remover provided me with a sample bottle to try around the house, and I was very pleased with the results! We've had a stubborn problem with yucky mold/mildew growing just inside our washing machine door around the vinyl basket. I sprayed on the areas and didn't need to scrub. I just applied the X-14 spray in a well ventilated space on the mold areas and rinsed. It was fast and very effective! Independent lab studies (Shuster Labs, Sept 2006) revealed that X-14 works up to 2 times faster than the leading competitor!

X-14 Mold & Mildew Stain Remover is a strong solution designed to tackle mold and mildew stains - one of the toughest cleaning problems around the home, RV or boat. It's safe for use on sealed grout, tile, vinyl and plastic surfaces when used as directed, and keeps the treated areas stain-free for up to two weeks! I'm glad to now have X-14 "The Bathroom X-pert" on hand in my cleaning product tool kit!

Thanks to MomCentral.com and X-14 for providing the sample to try at home!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

I am Celebrating National Mom’s Nite Out: the Ultimate Celebration of Motherhood


National Celebration of Motherhood Set for May 7, 2009

(St Petersburg FL/Simon Mall-Tyrone Square)–– Look out America, mom’s taking the night off! The first National Mom’s Nite Out is scheduled for May 7th, 2009 and includes special events, virtual communal celebrations and the common goal of celebrating motherhood. More than 200 mom bloggers, 50 mom websites, and a dozen companies have committed to giving Moms a well-deserved night off.

National Mom’s Nite Out is being orchestrated by Maria Bailey, Host of Mom Talk Radio and author of “The Ultimate Mom Book” as well as top Mom Websites, Newbaby.com, www.newbaby.com, BlueSuitMom.com, www.bluesuitmom.com, and MomSelect.com, www.momselect.com.

Our goal in hosting National Mom's Nite Out is to unite Moms all over the country prior to Mother’s Day,” says Maria Bailey, Author of “The Ultimate Mom Book” (HCI, 2009) and Host of Mom Talk Radio. “Most moms spend Mother’s Day taking care of the other mothers in their lives so we hope to give moms a well deserved night off right before Mother's Day."

The evening will consist of over 400 local events held across the country, as well mom-organized parties and virtual activities. Retailers such as Simon Malls, Children’s Orchard stores, and Giggle will be hosting special Mom’s Nite Out celebrations, complete with refreshments, entertainment and special offers. Family destinations Pump it Up and BounceU are even offering discounts to dad and caregivers in selected areas who want entertain the kids while Mom is enjoying her evening. Food and beverages at many of these events are being provided by corporate sponsors, such as Jose Cuervo.

Top mom bloggers and highly respected mom experts are also getting in on the fun by hosting their own events. Hundreds of mom-organized parties and gathering will be taking place that evening, including a Boston-area comedy show hosted by popular mom podcasters, Manic Mommies, a New York City “Daycation” themed party at Giggle and book signing party in Los Angeles with Mom authors and experts such as Kimberley Clayton Blaine, Romi Lassally, Megan Calhoun, Michelle Lamar, and Mallika Chopra.

I've been invited to participate in the Simon Mall/Tyrone Square St Petersburg event! Come see me - we're gonna have a blast!

If Moms can’t attend an event at a physical location, they can still take part in the festivities. To allow moms everywhere to participate, mothers will be invited to throw their own Mom’s Nite Out event by downloading party ideas and elements from the National Mom’s Nite Out website, www.momsniteout.com. On the evening of the event, thousands of moms will be socializing virtually through online chats, Skype and Twitter tweet-ups.

· What: National Mom's Nite Out is shaping up to be the largest cooperative effort of Mommy groups, Mom-focused organizations, bloggers and vloggers- all coming together for one great night in support of motherhood.

· When: Thursday, May 7, 2009 (Thursday before Mother’s Day)

· Where: Online, On Twitter, In Social Network Sites, In-home and in Sponsoring Retail Locations

· Official Song: Mothers Day Today, available on iTunes and the National Mom’s Nite Out site
Performed by: Jill Gioia
Written & Produced by: Jim Papoulis Conceived by: Alignment Enterprises
In Partnership with: MAMAPALOOZA: Mom-Branded Entertainment

· Official Drink: Mamatini, Momopolitan and Mamajitos

· Official Food: Chocolate

For event locations and a complete list of partners, visit http://www.momsniteout.com/.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

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Fishful Thinking...Nourish Their Possibilities (TM)

I am pleased to have been selected as a Fishful Thinking Ambassador. I received my Resource Kit in the mail today! I will be using these materials as I work with the Girl Scouts, YMCA, Our Savior Lutheran Church and School, Parenting Groups, friends/family/neighbors, and other community activities to share these great messages of inspiration and positive parenting! The Program even provides some incentives each week, and I'm pleased to say that I have achieved Top 15 Status for the past three weeks! If you live in my area, please be sure to contact me to find out how we can work together to share this wonderful opportunity with your family or group...

Click on the linky to learn more:

Fishful Thinking is comprised of five Key Ingredients:
Optimism: Focusing on the positive things in life.
Emotional Awareness: Expressing and controlling your feelings
Goal Setting/Hope: Finding ways to achieve your goals.
Resilience: Coping with life's ups and downs.
Empowerment: Identifying and using your strengths and skills.

Spring Cleaning - Bag It Up! My daughter Kristen and I worked together to identify our personal negative self-talk as discussed in the Week 2 Activity. I really loved this activity so much. It was great launching point for she and I to talk about how young ladies (especially) can slip into negative self-talk and mental clutter! We talked about her math experiences at school earlier in the year when she was really beating herself up unnecessarily about her math grades and comprehension. Now, she is doing much better and understands the current concepts (all A's!!!). She was tickled to be able to write it all down, ball up the paper, and toss it into the "Giveaways" Bag. We'll hold on to the bag for future use!
My favorite comment from Krissy during the activity:
"I've been beating myself up about my math work, but now "SO WHAT" - I'm all good!"

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Baby Einstein Premiere Party - Discover Our World Together

Wow, I was in for a treat when I was recently able to host a fun, interactive celebration featuring the new Disney's Baby Einstein World Music DVD and CD for some of my favorite little friends! Special thanks to my friends at www.momcentral.com to providing us with the DVD, CD, and Baby Einstein-themed party goods to share for our event.

The music was lots of fun for little ones ages birth and up for the CD and recommended from 3 months and up for the DVD. The DVD is great to enjoy with your child and friends. The music truly is a global perspective, "...a concert for little ears!" and even includes the lyrics to sing a long. I loved that several of the songs are in the native languages - fascinating for little ones to gain exposure to new sounds and experiences...

World Music is a great introduction to those sweet, little ears to amazing songs and music from around the world. What a treat for the senses! Our group of little folks completely enjoyed it from start to finish - it certainly was a fresh, new perspective to watching the DVD in a group setting, but it held everyone's interest for the full 37 minutes of the show as we explored new cultures together.

My daughter Kristen (age 10) was excited to check it out and we had some fun "shakin our groove thing" to the beat!

I encourage you to share this with your family soon - it's readily available at all retail outlets (B&M and online).

Disney Baby Einstein World Music CD Playlist:
1. Baby Einstein World Music Overtune
2. African Savnna Morning
3. Eagle Song (Hopi Tribe)/Billy Boy -North American Medley
4. Piruliot (lollipop) - Brazil
5. Londonberry Air/Garry Owen Jig (traditional) - A Celtic Medley
6. I am Happy - Africa
7. Mo Li Hua (Jasmine Flower) - China
8. Pilsen Polka (melody from Remembrances of Pilsen Polka, Smetana)
9. Aradiban Dance (meldoy from Peer Gynt, Grieg)
10. Bonnie
11. Trepak, Tchaikovsky - Russian Dance
12. Rainstick Joey - Australia
13. Anila Ghungroo - India
14. Golden Trompong - Indonesia
15. Bard, the Piper - Trinidad
16. Rainforest Dance
17. Shoo Fly - US
18. Arroz con Leche (vocal in Spanish) - Puerto Rico
19. Alouette (vocal in French) - France
20. Kogame, Kogame (vocal in Japanese) - Japan
21. This World, Our Wolrd
22. Ho Watanay - An Iroquoi Lullaby

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Fishful Thinking Sharing Activity for Your Family


Click on this linky to learn more about Pepperidge Farm Goldfish Crackers Fishful Thinking Program!

I joined the Repnation Ambassador program last week and was in the Top 15 for Week 3 to earn a $50 gift card!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Unilever Helping By MakingLifeBetter...and Contest

Be sure to check out your Sunday Newspaper this weekend (April 5):

Unilever brands are offering a sweeeet deal for your holiday meals....

In full color insert in our St Petersburg Times today had a pull out with up to $11 in savings on pantry staples including Bertolli, Breyers, Lipton soup mixes, Knorr mixes, Knorr Pasta Sides, Country Crock, Skippy Peanut Butter, Ragu plus several health/beauty products such as Caress, Vaseline, and Axe.

There's a mail-in rebate offer for up to a $20 value free ham or turkey if you purchase any ham or turkey and $40 worth of Unilver products:

The coupon Unilever is offering where you can get up to $20 back on your ham or turkey purchase by mail when you buy $40 in Unilever products during the month of April. The coupon will be in Newspapers this Sunday, April 5th.

For more information, visit http://www.makinglifebetter.com so you can also check out the site.
Also be sure to visit my good friends at MomCentral: http://www.MomCentral.com to get additional tips and information about parenting and other relevant topics.


Post a comment on my site between now and end of contest April 20, 2009 12 Midnight EST. Provide your favorite Easter or Passover holiday family meal memory including your contact information. One winner will be randomly selected from all posts received to win a $25 Target Gift Card to help with holiday shopping! Winner will be contacted via information provided and prize will be mailed to winner via US Mail.

Thank you for reading and participating - Good Luck and Have a Wonderful Week!

NEOSPORIN First Aid Products to the Rescue!

Every mom's worst nightmare is when a child gets a nasty scrape, scratch, itch, or cut!
My son Cameron and daughter Kristen get their fair share of them....pretty much weekly!
I have always trusted Neosporin brand products to help, and now I've got some additional items to add to my Dr. Mom Toolkit:
MomCentral kindly provided me with some samples to try recently of NEOSPORIN + Pain Relief Ointment, NEOSPORIN + Pain Relief Cream, and the newly available NEOSPORIN NEO TO GO! First Aid Antiseptic/Pain Relieving Spray.

These products are truly a blessing. As you can see above, Kristen found another invisible whatever to stumble over at school last week and really tore up her knee (photo below with Boo Boo Bunny, too)! It was great to have these amazing healing and pain relief items immediately on hand to put them to work and help her feel better right away. That's just what our kids expect from their caretakers, right?

I visited NEOSPORIN's web site recently and they have some great info and resources:
They have coupons available and great first aid tips, etc.
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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Making Life Better For Yummy Easter Treats and Beyond!

YIKES! April 1st is here in just a couple of hours...and no April Foolin' I'll be going crazy for the next two weeks...
Cameron's birthday will be on April 10th and Easter Sunday is April 12th so there will be a houseful of guests...I need inspiration instead of perspiration~
I'm visiting www.MakingLifeBetter.com for some great recipes and ideas:

MakingLifeBetter.com has great holiday and everyday meal ideas. With a combination of trusted brands that offer great quality at affordable prices as well as plenty of recipes and tips to help make everyday life better, Moms now have an easily available resource to help with meal prep any day of the year.

Whether you're planning the perfect Passover or cooking a delicious Easter feast, keeping your pantry, refrigerator and freezer well-stocked can save you time and money. Here are some of my favorite brands and recipes:

Easter Dinner:
  • Shedd's Spread Country Crock: Make your Easter main course a D-light, with this super-simple recipe for Country-Style Glazed Ham made with Shedd's Spread Country Crock Calcium plus Vitamin D. For a great holiday meal offer, check your April 5th Sunday newspaper! You can get up to $20 back on your ham or turkey purchase by mail when you buy $40 in Unilever products like these during the month of April.
  • Bertolli Sauce: If you usually dine out for your Easter meal, but are trying to save money this year, serve a restaurant quality feast at your own table with Bertolli Premium Pasta Sauce. A delicious recipe for Lamb Chops a la Pizzaiola from top chef Rocco DiSpirito will have your family wondering if it came from an Italian restaurant.
Passover Meals:
  • Ragú: Ragú Old World Style Pasta Sauce has a full serving of vegetables in every half-cup of sauce and is a good source of Vitamins A and C. For a family-friendly Passover dish, try Matzo Pizza with Ragú.
  • Shedd's Spread Country Crock: Add a little nutrition to a Passover favorite, Matzo Brei, with Country Crock Calcium Plus Vitamin D, which provides 20% of the necessary daily value of Vitamin D in each tablespoon.
Everyday Ideas:
  • Knorr Sides: Spend less time in the kitchen by making a quick one-dish meal in three easy steps. Simply add your favorite cooked meat or chicken to Knorr Rice and Pasta Sides to make your family a satisfying one-dish meal, like Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo.
  • Recipe Secrets: Creating a Country-Style Pot Roast is as simple as combining a few ingredients in the Dutch oven to roast , including Lipton Recipe Secrets Onion Soup Mix, which provides the perfect blend of seasonings to create delicious, affordable meals and great recipes for every occasion.
  • Breyers: Bring a sweet ending to your Seder with a classic Hot Fudge Sundae using delicious Breyers All Natural Vanilla Ice Cream - a family-favorite made easily (and more affordably) at home!