Solutions for distracted driving #giveaway

I consider myself a fairly cautious driver. About as much as possible with a little one in the back that constantly wants my attention. The older two usually don’t really want to do anything but hear “awesome” stuff on the radio. By the time we reach our destination, I’ve usually explained at least 11 times that mommy can’t “look at this”, because I have to focus my attention on the road. That’s if we’re traveling somewhere close by… Regardless, it’s usually the high pitch squeals that catch me off guard every time. The reason is usually that we’ve passed a favorite ice cream shop, or that there’s something “really cool” on the side of the road. It’s never the life changing tragedy it sounds like when she does it. It’s often just a favorite bird sighting. I’m always looking for solutions for distracted driving so I can keep my bird watcher and my two radio lovers safe!

Let’s face it, driving while mom isn’t easy. (Also, sometimes, wife, as seen above) That’s why I’m so excited to share the new systems by Safe Drive, which focus on Keeping Kids Safe. Safe Drive offers a variety of features each uniquely created to keep your family safe while you drive. The newest feature to this line up is the RD 140 RDR . Depending on the system, this features allows you to avoid head on collisions by constantly monitoring your distance to vehicles ahead of you. This is important since it only takes a moment for an accident to happen!

The real-time analysis feature warns of any potential dangers ahead of you, helping you to prevent accidents and fatal injuries to yourself and others. Both of the systems have a neat radar system that track moving items of any size. This can be anything from another vehicle, to a child riding their bicycle. Upon tracking the object, the systems provide you with 20 seconds advanced notice, allowing you time to safely react.

Seeing these systems allowed me to realize how much more I could be doing to keep my family safe. It’s those few seconds that can be used to safe a life. It’s even scarier to know that moms are 3x more likely to wreck with babies in the car. We invest in safe vehicles and car seats. Now it’s time to take keep our children a step farther with Safe Drive.

How do you avoid distractions when driving with children? Or should I say, how do you deal with distractions that come with driving with children?

For more information on Safe Drive Systems, please call (800) 735-6055 or fill out the form here.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of SafeDrive Systems. The opinions and text are all mine.


Enter to win a RD 140 RDR Safe Drive System!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Fabulous Side Dishes (Giveaway)

Whether you’re cooking a dinner for two, cooking for the family, or hosting a dinner get together, you’ll need some good side dishes. While it’s true that the main dish is usually the hero of any meal, side dishes are still important! You certainly don’t want to serve canned corn to guests! With these recipes, you’ll find some classic side dishes with a twist, and some absolutely mouthwatering dishes that are sure to impress! Sides don’t have to be simple, they don’t have to be fancy- they can even be the star of the meal if you want. Live a little.  Bend the rules.  Sometimes we like to do a quick main dish and focus on the sides that go with them- a Ristorante pizza or chicken on the grill can be made into a fabulous meal with something special on the side to go with it!

pizza-vegetale-ristorante

 

I’m sure you remember by now that Ristorante by Dr. Oetker is our go-to frozen pizza brand. I always have 2-3 of them on hand in the freezer downstairs.  It’s quick, it’s easy, and with plenty of delightfully pleasing toppings, something for everyone.  The gourmet toppings lend themselves to a full meal and not just quick pizza fixes, so you feel like you are indulging a little!

 

To see if Ristorante pizzas are available near you, check out the Store Locator. Don’t see Ristorante in your supermarket? You can put in a request with the store manager!

 

Be sure to like Ristorante Pizza on Facebook and enter their Savor Your Summer sweepstakes for fun giveaways before it’s over!

 

I love Ristorante because of its delicious toppings, particularly the veggies. Check out these fabulous side dishes we found around the web- wonderful side dishes to complement Ristorante pizzas and sneak even more veggies into your meal!

Summer Salad with Pepitas

We have a garden and are fortunate enough to be able to grow much of what we enjoy IN our salads right in our backyard. Salad’s always a quick and easy side dish, all year round, but in summer, we like to mix things up a bit.  Fresh chopped broccoli and pepitas add some fun new flavors to this salad, a little more calcium and protein, and a little extra crunch! Perfect with a pizza for dinner on the porch.

summer-side-pepita-salad-ristorante-speciale

Grilled Zucchini– This is a favorite simply because it’s a quick and easy recipe you can make with just about any in season veggie.  Simple seasonings and a quick turn on the grill make for flavorful, healthy and delicious sides.

grilled-zucchini-dinner

Lemon Parmesan Broccoli

lemon-parm-broccoli

Lemon Parmesan Broccoli goes SO well with the Pizza Vegetale. Lots of delicious flavors and no meat- a great Vegetarian dinner idea that’s quick and easy.

Lemon Pepper Asparagus

Lemon-Pepper-Asparagus2-300x300

Asparagus is one of our top 3 veggies in this house- we’ll eat it any time of year with just about any meal.  The simple flavors of this side dish pair also pair well with any of the Ristorante pizzas- they will serve to complement the pizza toppings and not pull away from them.  Lemon pepper asparagus is also a great side to pair with fish for a main course!

Roasted Cauliflower

roasted-cauliflower-salad

Pizza and a salad with roasted cauliflower?  Great dinner idea, ready in no time!

 

What are YOUR favorite side dishes?

summer-side-dish-prize-pack

Ristorante by Dr. Oetker is going to send one of my readers a Side Dish Prize Pack including:

10.5″ Serving Bowl, Crate & Barrel
13.75” Platter, Crate & Barrel
Wooden Salad Servers, Amazon.com
2 Ristorante coupons

 

 This post is sponsored by our friends at Ristorante by Dr. Oetker.  Opinions are my own. 

Samsung NX300 Smart Digital Camera

Taking pictures is one of my favorite things to do. I think my kids are already in love with snapping photos to capture memories and moments- they are forever asking for a turn with the camera and it’s fun to see the world from their lens-of-view! Actually- fun fact: 2 of the below photos were taken by my kids.  Can you guess which?

Our friends at Staples sent us the Samsung  NX300  to try out for several weeks- in part to snap photos for the #30SummerDays photo challenge in June!

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pizza-vegetale-ristorante

 

outback-seared-ahi-tuna

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captain hook

samsungnx300 peony

 

samsung-lilacs

 

samsung-iris

This little camera packs a really powerful punch! The NX300 has 20.3 MP, comes WiFi-enabled and takes gorgeous photos.  You can upload photos directly to social media! PLUS, you can do some editing of your photos right on camera.  :) The strap that comes with it is a nice length and not super bulky. Easy to tote around and have some fun grabbing photos and videos with it.  My kids have LOVED experimenting with this camera- it’s quite fun to see their perspective in photos!

The Samsung NX300 20.3 MP SMART Microless Camera comes with a 20-50 mm lens in the box.  There’s a whole array of lenses that you can get for this camera, so for those of you who don’t want the bulk of a DSLR camera, get your shopping list ready.  Lots of lenses, small body, FAST speed, touch screen- the NX300 has it all and then some when it comes to bells, whistles and tech specs to make you drool.  But what makes the NX300 stand OUT is the size.  12 ounces.  That’s a lot lighter than my 1.7 lb Canon, and that’s without a lens on the body.  Smaller size means it’s easier to carry a variety of lenses, or just to carry a smaller bag with you.  Traveling with a bulky DSLR isn’t always an option- now you don’t have to choose between phone photos or the DSLR. There’s a happy compromise!

Samsung-NX300--SMART-Microless-Camera-

*Samsung 20.3MP smart compact system camera in white color with 20 mm to 50 mm lens has 3.3″ touch screen AMOLED display and 2.5x optical zoom while featuring 1/6000 fast shutter, cmos sensor and HD movie mode.

*Samsung 20.3MP smart compact wi-fi enabled camera in white color with 2.5x zoom and 3.3″ touch screen AMOLED display features a lens of 20 mm to 50 mm focal length.

*Camera has 5472 x 3648 & 1920 x 1080 image and video resolution respectively.

 

Grab it: You can find the Samsung NX300 20.3MP Camera (available in white, brown or black) online and offline at retailers, including Staples, for $749.99. (I have the white, and it’s awesome.  I think the brown is just so different and fun!)

OR…

Enter to win a $750 Samsung NX300 SMART Camera With 20-50 mm Lens in white!

 

Favorite Things Giveaway Summer Hop #favoritethings

Over the winter I participated in a Favorite Things giveaway hop.  I decided to join with some of my favorite blogging friends for a My Favorite Things Giveaway Hop again for a summer version! These prize packages are put together by us for YOU and are filled with our favorite things! Ready for some fun!?  Our Favorite Things - SUMMER GIVEAWAY Here’s the low down on this giveaway hop- all 16 of us have the same format on our posts so it’s easy to follow along. Each prize pack has at least a $50 value and has some of OUR fave things!!

  • Take a look at the collage above to see all the amazing giveaways!
  • Scroll down to see  giveaway details.
  • Enter to win My Favorite Things prize package below.
  • HOP around to all the other sites, check out their amazing prizes, and enter to win their gifts!

SUMMER Blog Hop - Hop Around

1. A Helicopter Mom | 2. About A Mom | 3. Moscato Mom | 4. Homemaking Hacks | 5. Kids Fun Review | 6. Better in Bulk | 7. A Nut in a Nutshell | 8. My Sweet Sanity | 9. Mom Luck | 10. Around My Family Table | 11. The Rebel Chick | 12. Just Stop Screaming | 13. Sunshine and Sippy Cups | 14. MiscFinds4U | 15. The Divine Miss Mommy | 16. This Mama Loves

SUMMER My Giveaway - Enter to Win

Two of my biggest loves (that aren’t human) are bags and personalized items.  I LOVE them both.  I honestly would wear monogrammed stuff every day if it was a possibility.  Or at least put the kids in it.  I think I get it from my mom, because there are pictures at many ages where I was wearing sweaters with “Brett” or “Brettie” or my initials from childhood in existence. The bag thing? Probably not so much from my mom. She was more into function. I just love bags. I also change them often, so I like to keep options open based on my mood, my outfit, etc. My Favorite Things giveaway prize pack is a fab bag and a fab engravable necklace for one of you! My niece in law is a Stella & Dot stylist.  She’s also one of my favorite people. So naturally, when I saw her sporting some new personalized pieces I had many, many questions for her! stella kellyI love this bar necklace.  LOVE it.  I wanted to do my Twitter handle on one, but it’s 8 characters available and my Twitter handle is too long… maybe I should change my Twitter handle.. ha! Given how much I love these bar necklaces… this is the first part of My Favorite Things prize pack that one of YOU will enter! It comes in silver and gold for color and you can use 8 characters…so start thinking of what you want to put on your necklace if you win! We will be ordering it through my niece so you will choose what you want and I’ll be paying for you! The engravables range from $32 to $98 in price- the bar necklace we are giving away retails for $58! stella-dot-engraveable A note about the engravables from Stella & Dot– these aren’t available to order online, you’ll need to reach out to a consultant directly…. Kelly will be glad to help you I am sure- KNLaur@gmail.com is her email. Tell her I sent you! Also please feel free to share a pic of your new jewelry when you get it with me, I would love to see!! And now, bags. I love bags. If you ask friends, they’ll probably tell you at one point or another they have shopped for a bag in my closet.  It makes my husband crazy but it’s me and it’s who I am.  For a brief time I had a thing for diaper bags, but since the kids have outgrown them, that’s kind of over. I had eleven at my highest.  Totally serious.  Bags = awesome. Since I my mind was already ON Stella & Dot and I just ordered my first bag from them, I thought that part two of my giveaway for My Favorite Things should be a bag from there, as well.  I went with a bag that so many have ordered and loved and ordered as gifts – the Metallic Ikat Tote Bag! stella-dot-fave-things01   The bag is en route to my house as I write this so I will have to update with more photos when it comes.  This is Kelly’s bag shown above with one of her necklaces. I can’t even wait to get mine! The reason I chose THIS bag- well, there are multiple reasons. But my sister has it in the navy color and the versatility paired with the gorgeous fabric make it almost the perfect bag (I think there is no one perfect bag because I change my mind on what I like from day to day)!!  You can transform this bag to make it larger and hold more stuff, and you can fit  your things – and I mean ALL of your things- without worrying about space. There’s pockets, there’s quality construction, and there’s GORGEOUS fabric that can suit just about any taste.

stella dot prize pack 02

The Ikat Tote transforms in a snap from a carryall (and boy, do we mean all) to a satchel. Interior smart phone pocket, zip pocket, and water bottle pocket. It retails for $98 (although it’s on sale right now for $58!)

  • Measurements: height – 12.5″, length 19″, depth 5″, strap drop – 8″.
  • Exterior: metallic ikat in coated linen.
  • Interior lining: red diamond print in spill resistant material.
  • Trim and handles: espresso textured.
  • Top zip closure.
  • Signature Stella & Dot hardware: gold clover and arrow charm.
  • 1 exterior slip pocket and 3 interior pockets to fit your phone, keys, and, wallet.

 My Favorite Things prize pack with the engravable bar necklace and Ikat bag is valued at $116! I can’t wait to spoil one of you with these fabulous items!

 

$100 Target Giveaway

My blogger friends and I are bringing together two of our favorite things for a super-fun giveaway — Target & Instagram! You’ll have the chance to win a $100 Target gift card + follow some awesome bloggers on instagram! Be sure to bookmark this page and come back everyday because there will be daily entries available. Good luck!

Target Instagram #1

P.S. Check the Rafflecopter for the link to another $100 Target Giveaway for even MORE chances to win!

 

GIVEAWAY

 

Prizes: $100 Target Gift Card

 

Organized by: Oh My Gosh Beck!

 

Rules: Use the Rafflecopter form to enter daily. Giveaway ends 7/21 and is open worldwide.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Are you a blogger who wants to participate in giveaways like these to grow your blog? Click here to find out how you can join a totally awesome group of bloggers!

 

Best Windows Apps for Sports Fans

If you are still thinking of what to give the man in your life this Father’s Day, worry not! I’ve got you covered with some of the best Windows apps for sports fans! With a Windows App, you don’t have to worry about even leaving your house to pick up a gift. There is no shipping and handling involved. Your gift won’t be forgotten about in some deep dark corner of the house that holds all of the “world’s greatestest Dad” memorabilia he’s received over the years! Instead, your gift will remain at the tip of his fingers whenever he feels like utilizing! It won’t fade, shrink, or expire!

 

Here are a few the best Windows Apps for Sports fans:

 best-windows-apps-sports-fans

Baseball Pro+

For the baseball fanatic. Live scores, up to the minute standings, and news about your favorite teams! Go Red Sox! :)

baseball-windows-app

Watch NFL Network

Access NFL network programming AND your NFL Redzone, directly from your Windows 8 device!

watch-nfl-windows-app

Tactics Board

If you have a coach in your life, they’re bound to LOVE this app! Tactic board allows you to strategize and plan out plays right on your Windows 8.1 device.

team-tactics-windows-app

Car Fanatic

It’s no secret that most men love cars! This app will allow them to access to the fastest cars, right at their fingertips, making it very easy to pull up and show off to their buddies!

car-fanatic-windows-app

My Golf Hub

If you have a golfer in your life, this app is an essential. The app actually helps you improve your golf game by analyzing your swing, based on a video you’ve uploaded! It’s like having your own personal golf coach, right in the palm of your hand (but for much less money)!

golf-windows-app

 

FIFA 2014

Soccer fans will love this app.  Featuring 34 leagues, over 600 licensed teams, and more than 16,000 players. From the English Premier League to La Liga and beyond. Plus, for the first time on mobile, listen to commentaries in English, French, German, Italian and Spanish!

fifa-windows-app

 

 

Men’s Health 

An important app for men that allows you to make a fitness plan, create a healthy diet, reduce stress, enhance sleep, and more! (And if he’s PLAYING any of these sports he’s loving the app to, he’ll want to be healthy so he can continue to enjoy them!)

mens-health-windows-app

 

These are just a very small sample of what’s available for sports fans using Windows Apps! Head on over to Microsoft and see for yourself!

nokia-lumia-2520

Of course, he’ll need a tablet for all of these cool apps. Why not get him a Nokia Lumia 2520 Tablet? Head over to your local Microsoft Store and pick one up- knowing how helpful the folks are there, I’m sure they would be happy to help you load some of these apps onto the tablet before you leave so he can turn it on and play right away!

nokia-lumia-2520-tablet

This tablet has it all- Create and edit Word, Excel and PowerPoint files on the go. Synch your email and calendars with Outlook. And with up to 64GB of expandable memory and OneDrive, you can save your documents and pick up where you left off whenever you want. As you can see from the picture above, the profile of the Lumia 2520 is teeny tiny.  Not a lot of extra weight for him to tote around when he’s travelling or commuting to work (or the playground).

 

The Nokia Lumia 2520 with high-res Full HD display is crisp and clear even in bright sunlight. So you can see whatever you’re working on, wherever you’re working, indoors or outside.

Snap on the Nokia Power Keyboard and let your fingers do the talking. With up to five hours of extra battery life, a touch pad and two full-sized USB ports, getting things done on the move has never been easier.

The Nokia Lumia 2520 can store an 80% charge in just one hour, leaving you 100% free to unplug and do your thing.

 

One reader will win a Nokia Lumia 2520 Tablet!

 

 

 

I receive information and devices as part of the WindowsChampions program.  No compensation was received for this post.  Opinions are my own. 

How to Spoil a Man on Father’s Day (Giveaway)

Father’s Day is a week away. (Which also means my favorite weekend of the year happened a month ago already- where did those 4 weeks go!?) It’s time to focus on how to spoil a Man on Father’s Day.  Most of the dads in this world, and all of those who do the dad job without being a dad- they work hard and do the dad thing all year round without complaint, without praise, or accolades. They do it and from those I’ve met in my travels, don’t want praise and attention lavished on them for all of the awesome things they do all the time. Father’s Day is the one day where we can get them to let us say “Hey! We love and appreciate all of the things you do ALL THE TIME!”

So we have one shot at this, most of us, and I like to try to spoil my husband rotten on this one day he lets me.

how-to-spoil-dad

Because maybe another tie isn’t what he wants.

Maybe it is.

Maybe he doesn’t want Aunt Em’s world-famous fruit cake for breakfast this year.

Maybe he wants to spend the day flying kites.

Maybe he really does want to spend the day walking around the mall and shopping.

 

Ask him

Ask him ahead of time what his ideal Father’s Day would be. I’m totally serious.  I used to think my hubby would want to go out to eat for Father’s Day.  Turned out, his ideal day was just being home, all of us together. Maybe he wants to be surprised, or go to his favorite fishing spot. Maybe he wants to see a movie, or go golfing with his buddies.

I learned from having older brothers and from my husband that sometimes they want to be surprised.  But they’ll usually come out and tell us.  Or maybe they have an idea of what they’d like – that’s why I say ask them.  I mean, it is THEIR day after all!

Feed Him

I don’t mean to feed him by fork, although if that’s what you want to do, more power to you.  But make his favorites.  Splurge on the good cut of steak for the grill! Or take him to that favorite restaurant that’s a bit above your price range- or get him a gift card so you can enjoy a date night in the future. Talk to a friend and see if you can swap nights to watch each others’ kids for a date night so that you don’t have to pay a sitter (better yet, let the kids sleep over and give them a whole night!).

 

My husband LOVES ice cream cake, but it’s expensive and not something we indulge in frequently.  So why NOT spoil him and surprise him and order a Father’s Day cake online at http://coldstonecakes.com!?

 spoil-dad-fathers-day

Check out the Tall Dark & Delicious cake. Then order it.  I’m serious.  It’s amazing.  Delightful.  Decadent.  We surprised Mr. Martin this weekend with the cake because we just couldn’t wait for next weekend.

tall-dark-delicious-coldstone-ice-cream-cake

Layers of moist Devil’s Food Cake, Sweet Cream Ice Cream with Brownies and Chocolate Ice Cream with OREO® Cookies wrapped in fluffy White Frosting and cascading Fudge Ganache.

It’s all amazing.  But the fudge ganache just puts things over the top.  This cake is oh-so-decadent and a tiny sliver will satisfy even the biggest sweet tooth!  We actually cut it in half and sent some home with family friends so they could enjoy some of the decadence.  There’s none left at either house as I type this.

order-cakes-online-coldstone-creamery

Something to DO

If he’s a sports guy, find a something from his team that you can enjoy together.  I found these fun decks of playing cards, and they have a set for the Boston Red Sox.  That’s a double win.  He gets something fun for his team and also gets something for us to DO together! I’m also hoping that I can score some game tickets and include those with the cards so we (or he) can enjoy a game! (I love theme gifts, so we may have to get a new Sox shirt and fun travel mug for this theme as well).

red-sox-tickets

Photo Credit: Red Sox/ MLB.com

If he’s a fishing guy, plan a picnic near a favorite fishing spot!

This is a big one, but I learned it from our sweet friend Hattie:

“It’s not about having things, it’s about the things you do together.”

So instead of just looking for what to buy FOR him, look for what you can do together or something he can do.  If he’s a golfer, get him a round of golf at his favorite course. If you golf, go with him.  Make it a date.  Or set up a game with one of his buddies.

Regardless of what you do for the dad in your life…

get the cake. Or any Cold Stone Creamery cake.

I’m serious. It’s that good.

 One lucky reader is going to win a $50 Cold Stone Creamery Gift Card !!!

 

 

 

This post was inspired by our friends at Cold Stone Creamery, who have earned my undying love and devotion to their ice cream cakes. Not surprisingly, we’re heading there again today.

 

 

 

 

How to Get Date Night Hair Every Day #Giveaway

Being a stay home mom, I am frequently in a hair rut. Or, rather, once in a blue moon I actually DO something with my hair.  Now that my kids are getting older, we’re able to go out on date nights a little more frequently.

Which also means I’m needing to DO my hair so I have “date night” hair and not the mom hair I sport most of the time. But I need help. In part because I spent 39 years and 7 months with stick straight hair (unless I got a spiral perm, and I think we can all agree that wasn’t ever a good idea so let’s just forget about those times) and suddenly, when I cut 8 inches off this winter, my hair went all curly and stuff.

needs to be cut hair

I thought maybe I’d be styling my hair and do things with it curly but more often than not, it’s in a pony.  Later in the day it ends up in a sloppy bun.  Guilty of the mom hair.

date night hair

I am better than I was pre-curly hair about at least adding a little gel to keep the curls spunky but I have hair shame.

freshly done hair

Or, I did. I decided I’m going to start trying something new with my hair even just ONE day a week.  I’m also going to try some new products- I’ve been using mine for too long.

SuaveHairBachelorette

Get your date night hair on with Suave Professionals! Watch The Bachelorette Mondays at 8|7c on ABC to see tips on how to get the date night hair you desire from Suave. From naturally-infused moisture, to cleansed and conditioned hair, Suave Professional products work just as well as top salon brands. So head into Walgreens and look ready for that special night, every day.

Listen, I’ll take hair tips anywhere I can get them. If they come from TV, then so be it. At least I know that by buying Suave Professionals, I am not breaking the bank and spending top dollar on a product I may or may not want to keep using long term for styling. I’m especially intrigued by the Touchable Finish product, and will be looking for it later in the week when I’m at Walgreens.

 

One reader will win a $100 Walgreens gift card so you can try Suave Professionals and have date night hair every day.

 

 

 

Sponsored post by Lunchbox all opinions are my own.

$750 Amazon Giveaway

If you’re anything like me, you are SO ready for summer. June is SO BUSY for us and we’re only a day into it.  Yikes.  So what better way to celebrate than to give away one of our biggest prizes ever? That’s right — my blogger friends and I have come together to give one very lucky reader the chance to win an Amazon gift card loaded with… $750!

Totally Awesome Amazon

Will you be the winner of the $750 Amazon Gift Card? Bookmark this page and come back every day to enter and earn bonus entries by sharing the giveaway with your friends on social media. Good luck!

 

GIVEAWAY

 

Prizes: $750 Amazon Gift Card

 

Organized by: Oh My Gosh Beck!

 

Co-hosts: This Mama Loves ♥ Broward Saves ♥ Fluttering Lashes ♥ True Story Book Blog ♥ Amazing Super Savers ♥ Babushka’s Baile ♥ Finger Click Saver ♥ Fresh Fit N Healthy ♥ Jenn’s Blah Blah Blog ♥ Mama Papa Barn ♥ Misadventures with Andi ♥ Mom and More ♥ Pretty Thrifty ♥ Stacy’s Savings ♥ StushiGal Style ♥ The Skinny-Life ♥ The WiC Project

 

Rules: Use the Rafflecopter form to enter daily. Besides the mandatory blog comment entry, all other entries are optional. Giveaway ends 7/2 and is open worldwide.

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Hey bloggers! Would you like to grow your blog and increase your social media following? Click here to  sign up for the next Totally Awesome Giveaway and join a group of awesome bloggers!

 

Trista Sutter on family, gratitude and the great outdoors

Earlier this week I had the chance to sit down (via Skype) and chat with Trista Sutter.  Yes, “that” Trista Sutter.  Which is kind of ironic, because I’m fairly certain I’ve never watched The Bachelor nor The Bachelorette. (I have no reason why, although if they are all like Trista, I would love to watch….) So for me, this was a way to connect with another mom, albeit a mom who has a lot more fame in her life than I ever will.  It was a lovely conversation (though brief) but there were a few things that she said that were so meaningful to me, that really have just given me a refreshed view this week. I needed it.  It was nice to hear so much “normal” from a celebrity- talking about her kids playing sports, planning camps, playing Minecraft, stuff that the “rest of us” chat about all the time.

 trista-sutter-headshot-#theoutdoorsmissesyou

I had the chance to ask Trista a few questions- I was curious to hear what activities the family likes to enjoy most outdoors together.  Biking, hiking, walks, playing… the Sutters just really seem to enjoy being outside all of the time. They even go camping- and yes, I asked. They do tent camping.  (Clearly she’s braver than I am, I’m an RV camping girl I think…but I can hang in a tent. I’d just prefer not to….) It was really clear that Trista really values family time, together time.  Being outdoors with the family is important and part of their family on a regular basis. :)

 

Given that Trista’s partnered with OFF! brand to help get everyone OUTDOORS and enjoying all that mother nature offers, together, with our families, we had to find out some information about what her favorite OFF! products are. The Botanical Wipes came up several times, as did clip on repellents.  I haven’t tried the wipes but we plan to get some this week- my kids are really fair skinned and that pale skin is very sensitive to insect bites.  We’re looking forward to trying some wipes to keep the bugs OFF! the kids!

trista-sutter-happily-ever-after-bachelorette

I want to read Trista’s book: Happily Ever After: The Life-Changing Power of a Grateful Heart.  Why?

“The most important time to find gratitude is in those most difficult times because that’s how you get through them. Realize they are a blessing, even when it’s hard.” (Thank you for remembering that quote, Janel!)

Because showing gratitude every single day is immensely important.  It’s SO easy to get caught up in stuff- the big, the small, the daunting, the simple, and lose that gratitude.  But it matters. It’s important.  Trista shared with us that she committed to sharing gratitude on social media daily.  Every day. Part of being happy is choosing gratitude.  I’m pretty sure that I’ve heard that message many times in church sermons through the years.  I just have found times in my life where I almost forget to choose gratitude.  I’m recommitted to choosing happy…choosing gratitude…choosing positive.

mother-day-hammonasset

One of the best ways I have found that helps me to choose positive, choose gratitude, IS to get outdoors and BE with my family.  I actually wrote a whole post about the last minute decision on Mother’s Day to head to the beach knowing it’d not be warm enough to swim but feeling that strong urge to just get AWAY from the every day and connect with the family outside, exploring, appreciating, finding gratitude.  Choosing in those moments, planned or unplanned- those are the moments that turn into reasons for gratitude. We had one of the best days we’ve had all year and my cup was just overflowing.

As a mom, hearing Trista share how she says Magic Words to her children every night and has them repeat them really touched my heart. The biggest?

You are important” (yes, from The Help). What a gift to give your kids to remind them every single night they are important to you. I’ve decided we need to start using Magic Words in our family too.

national-get-outdoors-day

Oh, and one last thing? National Get Outdoors Day is June 14th. Cities all across the nation will be participating and you can join in on the fun or plan your own outdoor activities for that weekend. Check out NationalGetOutdoorsDay.org to see what’s planned for your area. Whatever you decide, do it outdoors!!

trista-sutter-book-giveaway-prizepack-#theoutsidemissesyou

One reader will  win a picnic basket, an outdoor blanket, a copy of Trista’s book and a bottle of OFF! FamilyCare Insect Repellent.

To enter, simple follow instructions on the Giveaway Tools form below.

 

This is a compensated post.  Opinions are my own.

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