Saturday, December 31, 2011

Did you get an iPAD2 for the holiday season?

With the holiday season behind us it is time to share what everyone received as their favorite present this year! My husband's favorite gifts were his accessories for the iPAD2 (I won't lie I am not iPAD savoy so the following opinions are my husbands and daughter). My husband's #1 problem with his iPAD2 is that it does not "stand up" well-we do have the covering but it often fall down and causes more trouble than it is worth in the end. To solve his problem I found the Rocketfish stand for the iPAD. The stand easily rotates and makes it super easy for my husband to use the device hands free. I personally love the non skid base-with a house full or kids and children you never know what can happen! My husband love the stand because it is light weight and he can tilt any direction whether he is using it on the table or in his lap- his direct quote is: "must buy" for anyone with an iPAD that doesn't want neck problems".  My daughter on the other hand likes to use the iPAD2 to watch movies on the way to Nana's house but we have had a few close calls with her dropping it on the floor because she either fell asleep while we drove or was just to tired to hold on any longer. The Rocketfish Car Mount was the perfect addition for little miss-it is up high so she no longer has to strain her neck looking down to watch a movie and we don't have to worry about her dropping the iPAD on the floor. The Rocketfish Car Mount is the perfect size and feels very sturdy...I was a little leery about attaching it to the head rest at first but the overall quality is amazing. We are looking forward to new additions from Rocketfish and best buy to make our iPAD just right for our busy lives!

The reviewer has received the reviewed product from Best Buy for free.

Nutrisystem Week #11

Well the holidays are over and I am happy to say that I stuck to the plan more than I had anticipated. I took the holiday planning advice from Nutrisystem and ate my meals before going to each family dinner and actually found that I did not over eat! Now I am not going to lie I cheated more than I have ever cheated before-a small bite of cake here, some ham there, and who can resist the egg nog and cookies. So while I did indulge I did not drink a whole glass of egg nog (cannot believe the calories in one glass) or eat a whole plate of cookies but I did enjoy the holidays with my family. I now do NOT link a good time with food-it was great to just laugh and catch up with friends at one of our homes instead of focusing the entire visit or food. Next week my SUCCESS order will arrive and I am so excited it is ridiculous-I cannot wait to taste the donuts and protein shakes. One of the shakes is coffee flavored and another is delicious! I would also like to mention that Nutrisystem was feature on one of the late night shows with Terry Bradshaw and as I watched him talk about his goals I realized we are all in this together. I am a huge believer in  Nutrisystem and so thankful to find a weight loss program that not only cares about weight loss but you as a person. Holding strong at 17 pounds lost and loving ever second!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Nutrisystem Week #10

So week #10-I cannot believe that I have lasted over two months on a "program". I lost another pound last week which is amazing considering I went to three holiday parties and a bunch of shopping dates with friends-thank you Nutrisystem for encouraging words during the holiday season...eating before going to a party really makes a HUGE difference! I managed to stick to the main meals and not "save" my calories for all the holiday treats. Now I will admit I did eat a cookie and a chocolate covered cherry-but guess what I came with a plan. I cut the cookie into fourths and then ate one piece....after an hour if I still wanted the cookie I knew I could come back for another piece but the sweet taste was long gone and that little cookie was just as satisfying as eating the whole plate-thanks Nutrisystem for teaching me portion control! Now if I can survive all of those temptations I know I can make it through this weekend and the rest of my's not about what I eat it is about the quantity (well of course I am not saying I can eat junk like crazy but one bite is satisfying). I am going into the new year with a new outlook on life-I have made it over two months eating great food and watching my body change-there is no going back to 179 for this girl!

*thank you Nutrisystem for proving my food in exchange for my honest opinions*

Friday, December 16, 2011

Nutrisystem Week #9- Welcome New Chef Table Collection

Week nine on Nutrisystem has been a full on adventure-I have given in a little and hit rock bottom more than once this week but also bounced back! In the beginning of the week I had to make cookies for my daughter's holiday party-let's just say I was not ready to tempt myself! I thought I could eat just one but that was a disaster and then I felt to bad about myself for straying from my goal that I ate junk all day long. One thing is for sure I woke up the next morning feeling disgusting and had a new sense of what my goal is all about-amazing how much food can change how your body functions on a day to day basis. The highlight of my week was a suprise package at my door of the new collection of the Chef Table meals from Nutrisystem. The new foods are full of flavor and part of a great new SUCCESS program which incoorporates a variery of foods and the personalized "My Daily 3" activity program. SUCCESS by Nutrisystem has also teamed up with Janet Jackson who has had a great change in her own weightloss adventure thanks to Nutrisystem. I am very excited about the program because they are adding new desserts and the new food using steam technology-the sort of remind me of the steamer bags with the vegetables and my new favorite is the crepes-delicious! With all the new options and the holiday ahead I am hoping to stay strong and at least maintain my weight if not lose a few pounds next week-here's to 16 pounds and counting!

*Thank you to Nutrisystem for providing my meals in exchange for my honest opinion*

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Christmas Highlight-Veggie Tales Little Drummer Boy DVD

My daughter is a little over two this holiday season and we really want to start sharing the holiday stories about Jesus and his birth. Most of the shows available revolve around Santa and while we embrace Santa & his elves we want our daughter to know about Jesus and his birth. My favorite religious dvds for children is of course Veggie Tales. The story lines are very simplistic and my daughter loves Larry the cucumber. So when Christmas time rolled around I knew that Veggie Tales must have a great dvd with a great lesson to teach! We found Veggie Tales: The Little Drummer Boy which is a story about a lonely child that finds hope when he find Jesus. My daughter loves the characters and the story line was age appropriate and entertaining. If you need something that is both educational and entertaining for a little one on your list this holiday season be sure to look for the great collection of Veggie Tales dvds!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

What a great day brought to you by Oral B & mommy parties!

I want to give a huge thanks to Mommy Parties and their host Oral-B for an amazing afternoon. We were recently selected to host a Winnie the Pooh themed party filled with fantastic treats and goodie bags for all our guests. During the movie we made the kids pop corn and gave them the jelly beans was so adorable to watch the kids so engaged in the movie! Winnie the Pooh was a just the perfect length to keep everyone entertained yet not so long that some of our little guests became distracted. After the movie we had a great time passing out the goodie bags to all our guests which included Winnie the Pooh toothbrushes, toothpaste, and Winnie the Pooh body wash. The kids were so excited to try their new toothbrushes we opened up a tube of paste and everyone brushed their teeth....what a site to see the sink with all these little chairs and step stools and the kids actually enjoying brushing their teeth! Now the toothpaste came in Princess and Cars theme which was a huge hit! Oral-B offers different stages based on the age of child and it is displayed on the front of the package so their is no question as to which toothbrush is right for your child! My daughter loved her new Winnie the Pooh toothbrush that is perfect for her age and her princess toothpaste. Not only does Oral-B make quality products but they taste great and all the kids were excited to go home with their favorite character!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Win a $50 Gift Card to DaySpring-perfect for the holidays!

Still looking for the perfect gift for the holidays? DaySpring truly has a little something for everyone...I was able to find the perfect sentimental gift for my daughter's godmother and a recordable story book for little miss. DaySpring has a very easy to maneuver site....I love being to able to pick an occasion and find gift ideas! I for one do not want to have to sort through a billion Easter or birthday themed items if I am looking for a wedding gift. Every minute of every day is crazy here so if shopping online can be a quick and easy process I am so in! Now we ended up ordering my daughter's book and it arrived very quickly and the packaging kept everything in tact. Over the holidays I am not sure if companies get a little crazy because of the rush but I have received several gifts that were damaged because of horrible packing. Not at DaySpring-they actually put the book in a wrapping to protect it and wrapped the book in enough tissue in the box-no damaged corners! Here are a few of my favorite things DaySpring has to offer:

Be sure to enter using the rafflecopter form below and win your very own $50 gift card!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Nutrisystem Week 8

Well I am now back home for a whole week and back on the Nutrisystem plan! I am so excited to finally be home and be able to get back into the routine. This week I have lost a total of two pounds and feel like after the break I am hitting a restart button on my weight loss so to speak. I am so close to hitting the 160 mark that the high 170's seem like a distant memory...crazy how 10 pounds can change so much! In two weeks we have my husband's annual holiday party and I am really looking forward to dress shopping this year. All of the past years I have been a weird size and either the bigger size was baggy or the smaller size looked like I had to do a gymnastics routine just to get in the dress. So I have also lost a bunch of inches off my waist-not sure how many but enough to drop a pant size! This week I also decided to spice things up a little and try all new foods and everything was so full of flavor-love the chicken Parmesan pasta. Although I must admit all of their pasta dishes have been delicious-and the pizza! I usually use the Margarita pizza as a treat for myself and when I hit the big numbers (anything over 2 pounds) I "treat" myself to pizza for lunch. Once you try this pizza you will know what I mean....quite possibly my favorite pizza ever! Here is to another week for everyone on the weight loss adventure-I look forward to hearing your feedback!

*Once again a huge thanks to Nutrisystem for providing my meals in exchange for my honest opinion*

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Gift Guide Highlight:Personalized Teddy Bears!

Now I know what you are thinking a teddy bear is a teddy bear right-wrong! I have come across one of the cutest sites ever dedicated to teddy bears and personalized items for your teddy bear....imagine presenting your love one with an adorable bear wearing a shirt with your photos saying "will you marry me". Of course this is something you create on Huggable Teddy Bears and as the holidays approach I am a sucker for any good proposal story!
Now my favorite bear they have to offer is the "Mother to be" bear. Often pregnant women get lost in the holiday season and are bombarded with gifts for the baby to be...I was pregnant during the holidays and received so many gifts for the baby! Now I am not complaining but we need to remember that there is a person carrying that little baby that everyone loves so what better than presenting the special someone with a mom to be bear holding a gift card to a maternity store or a pedicure.

Now these are a just a few of my great ideas when it come to the wide variety of bear available. There are custom shirts, sports themed bears, gift baskets, and really gifts for any occasion. The quality of the bears is impeccable and they really do have something for everyone this season. With great customer service and a wide selection Huggable Teddy Bears would be a great addition to any gift!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Win a Butler Bag-just in time for the holidays!

Now as you know I am always on the hunt for a super cute bag that is practical and fits my hectic life. My number one problem is things spilling in my purse and then ruining everything....let's just say those little squeezable fruit snacks are NOT my friend! Then I found out about the "world's most organizable handbag"-the Butler Bag. Of course I thought it was way to good to be true and there was no way my mess of a purse could be organized....well I will now tell you I am eating my words. The bag is super cute and looks like a high end designer bag without giving away your little organizational secret. My Everyday Tote is made of 100% Napa Leather! I have used the bag for several weeks and everything really does have its place. I can now find my cell phone without having to stick my hand into the unknown and hoping that I reach it in time before voicemail picks up. Do you want to know my favorite part of the bag-I can now carry lotion and lip gloss without having to worry about everything in my bag becoming a greasy mess. Here is my everyday tote:

The bag has been featured in US weekly, The Oprah Magazine, People, Lucky, Life & Style, the tryra show, e online, and so many more! The bag comes in a variety of sizes and colors-there is even a clutch for  holiday parties...carry it all without getting anything lost or broken! Right now Butler Bag is offering my readers a $130 off the EveryDay Tote by using the code 130FRUGAL and if you use the code you can also receive a free gift (your choice or bangles jewelry organizer or folding mirror). With that price it is a great buy for the holiday season....I love being organized while carrying a trendy bag!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Finally Home and Recovering

Hi Everyone! I just wanted to write a short note explaining my absence. I was unexpectedly hospitalized a little less than two weeks ago and now am home. I do want to reach out and thank each of you that sent an email of concern with the lack of posting-it really does make me feel like we are a "family". I will return to normal posting later this week after I have a few days to readjust. Once again you guys are great-I couldn't and wouldn't do this without all of your support!

Monday, November 28, 2011

One Stop Christmas Hop


Enter using rafflecopter below to win a Ceiling Fan 

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Deck The Halls Hop


Use the rafflecopter form below to win a Hot Slings! 

Winner Wonderland Giveaway Event

Taking Time For Mommy. This event features giveaways with a value of $25 or more at each of the participating blogs! Check out all of the great Winner Wonderland Sponsors being featured in this event! Be sure to visit each blog from the linky below and enter for your chance to win! This event will 
close on December 4th at 11:59 pm EST.

Use Rafflecopter below to win the following prizes:

Prize pack #1: Nap Bag
Prize pack #2: Groovy Girl Doll, Make your own candy kit, spa making kit 

Friday, November 25, 2011

gifts galore hop

Welcome to 12 Days of Gifts Galore Giveaway Hop hosted by Tales From the Nursery, Formula Mom, and Mama on a Green Misson. There's over $5,000 in prizes offered to help you get the gifts you need this holiday season. After you are done entering our giveaway you'll want to check out everyone else's and enter here for a chance to win one of three grand prizes sponsored by Kudzoom! Each blog you stop and enter at will be another entry!

Enter using the rafflecopter form below to win the following prize pack:
Em's Kids Headphones
Little Toader's PJ's & book
True Nature gift back

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Holiday Turkey Hunt (SAMM) is your online resource for finding the best savings to your favorite online stores. Choose from over 30,000 coupon codes and deals from our 3,000+ retail partners. Save on everything from clothing and accessories to gifts and office supplies. Don't forget to visit the Make Moola page for some great ways to earn a little extra cash.
Make sure you visit each of the participating blogs to get the secret clue. Combine all 30 clues to discover the secret pass phrase that is the required entry for the grand prize giveaway! The letters are assigned in order of bloggers, for example, the 15th letter  can be found on the 15th blog in the list.

To enter to win the Holiday Turkey Hunt Grand Prize - an XBox 360/Kinect Bundle - please visit The WiC Project and Mommy PR. Enter on both sites to double your chances of winning!

The Holiday Turky has

left a clue. The letter...M (the 29th letter)

Use rafflecopter below to win the following prize pack:
1. Sure Flap Cat Door
2. Project Iris t-shirt 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Great Holiday Gift for any fashionista!

I would like to highlight another one of our Winner Wonderland Sponsors- SmartLab Toys! The company is definitly a unique one stop shop for all the scientists and book lovers on your list. We had a chance to experience the All Natural Day Spa.

Not only does this kit encourage girls to embrace science but it also makes a great Christmas break activity for all of their friends! The kit contains chemical-free products and a party-planning guide for a perfect spa day. My daughter loved creating delicious smelling spa products with her friends and decided to use a few as holiday presents for her aunts. The kit is available on SmartLab Toys, Amazon, and other select retailers. SmartLab Toys has so many great gifts to offer including puzzles and many great science kits! Be sure to enter here to win your very own Spa kit!

Sponsor Highlight-Manhattan Toys!

Manhattan Toys comes through once again just in time for the holidays! My daughter is in major doll mode and insists on sleeping with each and every one which makes for a crowded bed and not the softest dolls! Then I found Groovy Girls-not sure how I missed these amazing dolls-both soft and very trendy. Apparently I am behind on what is "in" because my daughter and all of her friends love Groovy Girls. Here is the holiday doll Cali Candy Cane:

You have a chance to win your very own in the Winner Wonderland Prize Pack! Imagine how excited your little one will be to wake up to Cali in their stocking! My daughter loves her doll and it has been a big hit with all the kids-soft enough to fit in the barbie cars but big enough to play in the high chair and pack & play. My daughter has officially fallen in love with Cali and she takes her to bed each night which is great because I don't have to worry about her rolling over on a hard doll. We have also spot cleaned our Cali doll many times and her clothes are made to last! Don't forget to register to win your very own and order your doll just in time for the holiday season!

p.s Manhattan Toys has so many great options for kids of all ages-save yourself some time and have all your holiday toys shipped at once from a company you can trust!

Sponsor Highlight-Sureflap Cat Door

As a owner of 3 furry little kitties I cannot begin to tell you my delight in finding the SureFlap microchip cat door. The cat door is perfect for anyone who wants to allow their furbabies to come and go but keep all the other neighborhood animals out....remember the story of the women who had a raccoon come in through the cat door? Well that was my biggest fear and because I was so paranoid my cat door served basically no purpose because I would latch it closed. Thanks to the battery powered SureFlap I don't have to worry about waking up to a forest of animals in my kitchen. The door is very elegant and allows your cat to enter and exit using their current microchip. It is such a great concept and perfect for any pet owner for the holiday...don't forget to enter to win your very own during the Turkey Hop!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Home for the Holidays Event

Artsy Chaos

Love the Holidays? Love home decor? Love to give gifts you have put together yourself? Love Giveaways too!? Well then YOU ARE IN THE RIGHT PLACE!! Welcome to the Home for the Holidays Event where you can enter to win some great prizes for your home and the Holidays! Hosted by Artsy Chaos , Kelly's Lucky You,  My Chaotic Ramblings, and Shopping for Savings. This event will have you visiting each blog for prizes from some amazing sponsors each valued of at least $25. Use the linky at the end of this post to hop to the next blog.

Enter using the rafflecopter form below to win the following prize pack:

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Holiday Season is Right Around the Corner!

It is official we are in full holiday swing...I personally do not get excited until after Halloween-after all that is my favorite holiday! This year we are doing a little something different with our holiday cards-making them from home! For the last few years we have spent tons getting them done and then having to pay a fortune for either the photo release or for the picture place to print our cards. This past weekend I took a bunch of fall photos of my daughter and pups playing in the leaves and we will be using that as the main photo. We have also decided to hang up a "card tree" this year. We made a big paper tree and are going to hang it on the door, then as the cards arrive our daughter can use the paper clips to decorate her tree. I figure it is a nice way to keep the cards on display without lining the doorway or having a pile on the mantel. Receiving Christmas cards has to be one of my favorite parts of the holiday-no pretending to like a crazy gift you did not want or need and they often include photos to see how everyone has changed. As more people in out family extend their family I will be excited to see how the babies grow from holiday to holiday! Anyway we have decide to use Tiny Prints this year-it really will be nice to have everything delivered to my door! Last year the photo place took forever to get the prints done and half looked smeared so I am more than excited to simply select a card, add the photo, and done-the prints will arrive looking fabulous at my door! Here is the card we are most certainly going to use-there is such a large selection of cards for every season and personality type-I would love to hear the card you have selected for your family!

Let's Not forget Thanksgiving-super cute dress for little miss!

Now Thanksgiving is just around the corner and I realized that little miss has no themed Thanksgiving clothes. This year her school will be having a "finger food Thanksgiving feast" and I really wanted her to be in the holiday spirit. It is so easy to find Christmas, snowman themed, red/green clothes, but Thanksgiving was a bit of a chore. I also really love pillowcase dresses because my daughter can wear them as a dress and a shirt as she grows so I began to hunt and found- KootieZ. She has some of the most amazing and creative pillow case dresses I have seen in a long time...not to mention the adorable ruffle pants that are beyond adorable! Here is the Thanksgiving dress we have for little miss:

The dress is very true to size and I know that she will be able to match it with leggings and a turtle neck next fall and maybe even have a turkey shirt the year after. The dress arrived very fast so you have time to get your perfect Thanksgiving a bonus anyone who says they were referred by free & frugal mommy of one will receive 10% off at the etsy store or at the website. Not a big Thanksgiving fan? Well then there are a ton of holiday outfits available and you won't have to worry about buying something that your little special person already owns! I love getting something from small shops for my daughter for the holidays-it really makes me feel like the person goes the extra mile and put some thought into what they were going to purchase. Here is one of the holiday dresses-happy shopping!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Sponsor Highlight: Vizardz Personalized Nightlight

Here is one of my favorite ideas on the gift guide-Vizardz Personalized Nightlights! The completed product is beyond breathtaking....we had my daughter's first day of school with her kitty turned into a night light and I was amazingly impressed. The picture is in color and just lights up the bathroom with the right amount of light. As little miss continues to get up in the night to go potty we find the nightlight to be the perfect amount of light without waking her up and she finds the personal picture very comforting. She loves her Cooper (our cat) and doesn't feel alone in the dark...we went through a very bad afraid of the dark phase not very long ago so this is a huge plus. Not sure a nightlight is a must for the holidays? Consider a personalized light box or ornament. I know that the distance between our families makes holiday time a little stressful so I love to give the grandparents something personal....just think every time they walk into their bathroom they can see their grandchild's smiling face. I cannot stress enough what a great gift idea the nightlight would make (and it is so unique!) plus turn around time is amazing with stellar customer service. Here is an example of the night light:

Holiday Gift Guide 2011

Here are a few of my favorite things-great companies & great gift ideas! 
Trendy Children Clothes & Accessories: Cuddle A Children's Boutique
Great Stocking Stuffer-My True Nature
For those hard to buy for: Snorg Tees
For hours of fun & creativity-Easy Playhouse
Another great stocking stuffer-Real Kids Shades


Custom Jewelry from The Pretty Peacock 
Rain boots, coats, umbrella's-Kidorable

Custom Night Light & Shadow Boxes-Vizardz

Spread the Warmth Charity Event

Spread the Warmth Charity Event-check out this great event here. Register to win one of 90 prizes and help out a great cause! 
More from the website:
We have well $3500 in prizes lined up for you to win! There will be 90 WINNERS! 
Minimum prize value is $10 but some are worth over $100.

All you have to is make a donation to Embrace Infant Warmers and you are entered to win!
(Donation minimum is $10 - see details below)

About Embrace Infant Warmers:
Embrace is a social enterprise that aims to help millions of vulnerable babies through a low cost infant warmer. Unlike traditional incubators that cost up to $20,000, the Embrace Infant Warmer costs 1% of this price. The device can work with or without electricity, is portable, safe and intuitive to use.

Who Embrace Helps:
"" "Embrace Infant Warmers"
Story of Ayesha: Ayesha is a beautiful baby girl who weighed only 1100 grams at birth. Her mother and father had already lost two previous children after birth due to lack of proper medical care. They saved every penny so that Ayesha could be born in a city hospital, a four-hour walk from their village. Ayesha had a very low chance of survival and was kept in an incubator under constant observation for 10 days. However, as her parent’s savings ran out it was not possible to keep her in the NICU any longer. It was at this point that Ayesha was placed in an Embrace Infant Warmer for thermal support.
Ayesha went home with her mom and dad after about a month, and has been putting on weight and doing well. Without the thermal support of the Embrace Infant Warmer, it is unlikely that Ayesha would have survived.

Empowering Doctors to Save Babies: Embrace is impowering doctors in resource-poor settings to provide better care for babies. Recently one doctor, who runs a birthing center in a small town, was given and Embrace warmer. The entire town only has two NICU centers that receive babies from a 50-100 mile radius. During our visit, we were shocked to see that the clinics two radiant warmers had NO temperature control and could get hot enough to cause severe burns. The doctor told us about a baby who had almost gotten burnt when a nurse accidentally turned on the unit. It is in innumerable places like these where Embrace can and will really make an impact.

How Can You Help?
By making a donation into the charity raffle giveaway event today, your money will go directly to support Embrace's Programs in India and soon across the world.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Sponsor Highlight-Barbamel Books

Looking for a unique gift idea for the holidays? Check out these "I love daddy because" books! Now the books are not limited to daddy-there is a mommy edition, and a grandma and grandpa edition (coming soon a brother & sister edition). The books are perfect for any little one especially those that are far from the ones they love. The book has photo spots for your own 4x6 pictures so it is easy to personalize and become a one of a kind adventure. The board books are very sturdy and have withstood my daughter spilling her cereal and using it as a surf board-of course not recommend but she loves to make her books multi purpose :)  In our case my husband works long hours and travels a ton and we are far from family. It is nice for my daughter to have a book that has pictures of her and her family so she can remember everyone and be with them while they are far away. The pages and ideas of the book are simplistic and classic so it is easy to fit your photo into the story and bring the book to life. My daughter likes to "read" her book to her bear and tell him about daddy's book. Not only are the books fantastic but I have had a chance to meet the author and she is amazing-one of the sweetest business owner's I have met in a long time! She really does care about the success of her company and adds a personal touch to the overwhelming book market. While Barbamel Books are just beginning their US journey the books are sold in a wide variety of stores-find books near you here or you can order online. These books are sure to be a great success-especially around the holidays! Order now for your special little one and watch their delight when they open a book all about them!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Nutrisystem Week #7

So this week was a little different than the rest of my weeks on Nutrisystem because I actually stuck to the plan! As you have read we are in the final stages of the adoption procedure and I was so nervous and stressed I just wanted to eat everything in sight but I resisted. Instead I went for a walk, took a nice hot bath, played a game with my daughter. I know that you gain weight pound and by pound and if I am not careful the weight will sneak up on me again. The life savor this week has been the meal plan book and the online forum. My fellow Nutrisystem friends put up great recipes-for example I really wanted ice cream and one of the ladies posted a great way to make a banana into this light fluffy ice was delicious! The book also has a great guide on how to eat out without undoing all of your hard work. Next week I have Lasiks so I know that I will not be able to sweat for a week so it will be a new adventure. Just remember everything you put in your mouth effects your body and your mood. Sure you won't see the effects right away but it will show up in family photos and the mirror eventually. We also have our holiday card photo planned for two weeks from now-I cannot wait to see how far I will come in two more weeks!
A big thank you to Nutrisystem for providing me with my food in exchange for my honest opinion of the program.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Join the Mother's Day Gift Ideas Carnival Event-Sign Ups Now Open!

mothers day gifts

It is a perfect time to find what gifts you would like to give to your mother. Makobi Scribe is proud to present Mother’s Day Gift Ideas Carnival Event from May 10 12:01 PM EST to May 18  at 12:01 PM EST and is accepting signups now.

Under the Tree Giveaway Event


Welcome to the Under the Tree Giveaway Event hosted by Life With Two Boys and Mommy's Reviews and Giveaways. This is a child-themed event and the perfect opportunity for you to enter to win some gifts to put under your tree this Christmas. Be sure to hop around to all of the participating blogs before 11:59 pm on November 14th to see the awesome prizes they have to offer.

Prize Pack:

Handstand Kids Cookbook Chinese Set

Monday, November 7, 2011

Get a Melissa & Doug 25% Off Coupon When You Take the North "Poll"

Melissa & Doug want you to tell them which of their educational toys you think is the best! Just click on the image below to place your vote in the North "Poll!" You'll Get a Melissa & Doug 25% Off Coupon** to use at just for voting!

Sharing for Christmas Charity Giveaway Event

Hauling and Trucking
Hauling and Trucking & Makobi Scribe present Sharing For Christmas where we gathered together to donate to Parker’s Pals, which is an organization that helps children who are diagnosed with cancer under the age of three. The bloggers hosting the event donated just under $200 to go towards a Parker's Pail. The cost of a pail is $240 so we came really close! Please check out this worthwhile organization!
Prize Pack:
Real Kids Shades Sun Glasses

Sponsor Highlight-Handstand Kids Cookbook

Looking for something for the kid that has everything-look no further than Hanstand Kids! This holiday season we are determined for our family to give our daughter memories or something we can do as a family instead of a ton of toys that she will forget about in a week. While at an expo last month I found the company Handstand Kids and knew it was a must have for our family. The company offers themed cookbook kits, aprons/hats, and all purpose mats. My favorite is the Chinese cookbook kit-which arrives in a take out box and includes chopsticks! The book is full of recipes and rated for different ages of children and easy to use-trust me.... take this from someone who cannot cook! I cannot wait to get my daughter the Italian set-it comes in a pizza adorable! This is truly a gift that you can share with your special little someone-I cannot wait to watch little miss cook in a chef hat and apron. Not only is the cook book set something a little different for the person who has everything but it helps build little memories. I can just imagine when little miss is older remembering how we used to cook in the kitchen and make dinner for daddy-sure we may make a mess but my baby will be full grown in a blink of an eye. Handstand Kids has received many awards and has been featured in parent's magazine, people, and countless others. You can order your cookbook set online here or find them at your local Bed, Bath, & Beyond. I look forward to hearing all of your cooking adventures with your own little special someone :)

Featured Sponsor-SolPals

SolPals are the greatest invention of all time (of course completely my opinion!). Do you have children that are afraid of the dark? For my family it is not that my daughter is afraid of the dark but she is nighttime training and turning the light on in her bathroom wakes her up completely and then I am up in the middle of the night with a wide awake toddler. The SolPal is the world's first solar-powered hybrid nightlight and comes in two great designs. My daughter has the MoonBeams design which she calls her "magic sunflower". The light can be easily suctioned to any window and then easily bends through the blinds-don't worry the packaging comes with clear instructions and it is super simple to install. We live in a state that is not always "sunny" so having the option for the unit to run off of batteries is a life savor-I never have to worry about the light turning off in the middle of the night! Now why do you need a solar power night light you may ask? Think of this horrifying event-your little one is sleeping soundly when their night light sparks a fire. Chances are your night light is near your child's bed and fire moves so quickly it is incredible. I personally have a huge fear of exposed outlets. My daughter is one curious cat and so smart-I have no doubt she can easily pull out a traditional night light and stick who knows what into the socket. I am so glad I have found SolPals-what a great gift idea for anyone on your list!

Sponsor Highlight Karina Dresses

As I continue my weight loss adventure I have begun to look for clothes that really make me feel good about you I am....goodbye sweats and hoodies-hello dresses! Now I have a weird body shape so it is hard for me to find clothes that fit my large legs and smaller waist. With dresses I have a horrible time finding something for my wide shoulders and not either looking like a hanging garbage bag or being so snug all over that I can barely walk. All of the stress over finding a perfect dress ended when I discovered Karina dresses. What sold me on the dress was that it will grow with you five pounds in either direction and that there is a type for every body. I personally have the Daisy style and am amazed at how well it shows off my body while not being snug on my legs. Here is the Daisy:

Now as a mom of a toddler I do not have time to drop off dresses at the dry cleaner so when I found out that Karina dresses are made for busy moms I was thrilled. Just throw your dress in the wash, drip dry and go- the dresses never need ironing! All Karina dresses are made in the USA and have impeccable quality. Each dress truly feels like it was made special just for you-I cannot wait to grow my Karina collection!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Buckle Guard PRO-great piece of mind!

Here is my horrifying experience from a week ago-my daughter yells “look at me-I did it!” and my response (because I am driving) is “great good job”. Then she replies “I get out now” and I look in the mirror to find her messing with the seat belt. I think nothing of it and keep driving until I turned at the next major intersection and her seat tips over with her in it -I mean tips on the side and there is nothing I can do but watch horrified. Now what if I would of been in a car accident-her seat would of flown out of the car or something else terrible could of happened. Now I have seen a ton of “child proof” things for the car but my daughter can do it all-open the childproof locks, window latches, and even baby gates. So I started to hunt and find something that would outsmart my little smarty pants and prevent her from being able to “push the button”. Why on Earth would they make the release button red in the first place-they are just asking for little hands to experiment! So after searching I found something that my daughter has not mastered and it is called the Buckle Guard PRO. If your child cannot open pill bottles this is the best thing for your car. The Buckle Guard PRO is plastic unit that slips over the seat belt  to cover the release. You then put the cap on so the child cannot push the big red button to release their seat belt. The Buckle Guard PRO has received the 2011 Seal and Excellence Award from Creative Child Magazine and is under $10 dollars (available here at Amazon) . In my opinion it is worth every penny for the piece of mind it brings. Here is the Buckle Guard PRO:

Hold on Handles-great for kids who love to "walk it!"

My daughter's new favorite thing is to "walk it". At first I thought this is wonderful-no more back ache from carrying little miss everywhere but she had different plans. Apparently when we are "walking it" there is to be no hand holding which means complete chaos. Since it is not safe in parking lots or many places for that matter I had such anxiety over what to do-then I met Greater Than One Kids at media expo. The company is the greater of the product Hold on Handles which are perfect for strollers and walking. We have the dolphin set and my daughter is very happy to be "free" yet close to me without any danger. Here is a great shot of how the Hold on Handles work:

Unlike the other "child on a leash" inventions this product is just like your child holding your hand and staying close-my husband personally loves our Hold on Handles because he does not have to bend over slightly to reach her little hand anymore.  Now as I have stated we are in the process of adopting so the Hold on Handle is going to be great to attach to the stoller and still keep little miss close and safe plus when our new little gets old enough we can add another Hold on Handle to keep them both safe! The handles are availble is a hard design and a new soft ring which is perfect for the younger "explorer's". My daughter took to her Hold on Handles very quickly-I think because she uses a walking rope at school and I was not "restraining" her like some of the other leash type products. If you have a parent on your holiday list that has everything this is a great buy for thier independant little explorer.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Win a gorgeous necklace from The Pretty Peacock

Here is one of my favorite jewelry shops and a perfect addition to the holiday gift guide! The Pretty Peacock not only offers high quality pieces but they are so unique and elegant. I have one of the Longitude Latitude pieces and I have received many compliments and questions. The piece has the directions to the church that my husband & I were married and when someone notices the necklace it leads to how clever the whole idea is behind the necklace. I love the heart shaped clasp and it is very easy to dress up or dress down on a day to day basis.

The company has been featured in Pregnancy & Newborn, InStyle, Kanchi Magazine, and good Karma. If you are looking for something a little different be sure to check out the Sanskirt Wrap Bracelets. The bracelet is a multi wrapped leather bracelet with a presentation card outlining the text of the bracelet. Below is the photo of the must have Sanskirt bracelet for the holiday season:

There are so many options for the holiday season-everything from personalized cuff links to great personalized mom gifts. I am sure you will find something whether it be the charming yet simple longitude/latitude collection or the tiny touch collection perfect for any mom. Want your order by the holidays? Last day for US orders is December 4th and from now until the end of November my readers receive an extra 10% off and FREE shipping!  The discount code is FRUGAL2011. Enter below using the rafflecopter form to win a FlyLeaf Birthstone Pendant: