Back to School Shopping at Target #BTSwithTarget

Target has everything child(ren) need for the Back to School season, from supplies to apparel. We got supplies a while ago, and the kids spent many, many hours organizing and reorganizing their backpacks before the first day of school.  I don’t like to do supplies and clothes shopping all in the same day- I get overwhelmed and the kids do too.  We find too much at Target, every time we go…but I digress.

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I actually enjoy bringing the kids to look for clothes. I love to see what they’ll be drawn to, and what they like for colors, patterns, fabrics, styles, etc.  My son LOVES plaid shorts, and he almost made a beeline for the Cherokee Boys’ Chino Shorts in Baked Red.  He was giddy when he found a “totally hilarious” Minion shirt that has a Minion doing a photobomb on it! He actually put it on over his shirt to make sure it would fit without me even ASKING him. (He hates trying things on!)

back-to-school-minion

I do love Minions. I also love the price on these shirts. He also found a Ninja Turtle one with his fave Raph on it. Score. He didn’t need much for school but we do like a new first day of school outfit!

My oldest- well, she’s turning into quite the little fashionista. Right before my eyes, in spite of me being fashion clueless.

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Sigh. At least I can afford the stuff she likes when it’s from Target!!  The whole outfit was under $25. 3 pieces!!

She’s also having fun playing around when shopping, being goofy, and silly. Reminds me of how I was with my friends in stores…

target-accessories

 

She totally wants a purse.  For her smartphone.  That she doesn’t have. We settled for some fun socks – I think one pair had phones on them.

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First day of school outfits, complete.  Little sis had chosen new stuff that is more for colder days… these skinny overalls might just be like the cutest thing EVER.

 

I think the best part of our Back to School shopping at Target was 3 kids on good behavior, a fun ice cream outing after shopping, and 3 kids’ school supplies, outfits and stuff ALL for (well) under $300!

TARGET_LOGO

Every little thing is a really big deal.

 

Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Target via Glam Media.  The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Target.

 

The little things


This post brought to you by Huggies and Kleenex. All opinions are 100% mine.

As I sit here listening to the kids playing (nicely) together, hearing my husband putter away upstairs on a project, it’s striking me how powerful the little things are in life. The big things are, for sure, also important, but so often, it’s the little things that seem to matter most, and make the biggest impact. Impulsive hugs, sticky kisses from the kids… giggles…

This morning, our little one came into our bedroom and gave us a huge smile, saying “I’m so glad you are home today with us, daddy!” Little things.

Leaving little notes tucked into lunches, to be found later… arranging the food on their plate to make a face, or a silly image.

little-things-kleenex-ultra-soft

Tomorrow, I’ll be holding a whole box of KLEENEX® Ultra Soft Tissues when all 3 of my kids get on a school bus together for the first time.  And, for the first time in 9 years, I’ll be alone for my days, all 3 kids will be in school full day. It’s a big milestone, for all of us, but the day will be filled with little things for each of the kids…and for me.

kleenex-ultra-soft-bundle

Given my propensity for crying at every milestone, each birthday, each first day of school… the kids insisted we not buy a few boxes and instead head to Sam’s Club where we could be sure to have plenty of Ultra Soft Tissues on hand for mama’s tears.  So we got a 12 pack bundle- we were already in store, but KLEENEX® Ultra Soft Tissues can be purchased using FREE Online Order Pickup for convenience.  Funny kids that they are, they’ve also mentioned a daddy bucket (5 gallon) for my tears when they pull away on that big school bus in the morning.

SchoolBus

I think I’ll tuck a few tissues into their backpacks.  Maybe they’ll sneeze, or get a little smudge of something on their hands on the bus.  Maybe it’ll just remind them that mommy’s still thinking of them, even when they are at school.

We even brought boxes of the Kleenex Ultra Soft Tissues to each of the kids’ new classrooms at the meet and greet today. You can’ t have too many tissues in a classroom! Plus, just like here at home, we use tissues for so many more uses than blowing noses.  Removing glittery eye shadow, applied by a five year old in dark lighting? Check.  Mystery ‘stuff’ on cheeks… little spills, wrapping newly-lost teeth so they don’t get lost… picking up no-longer-alive-spiders-and-other-creatures that may need to be removed from the classroom…making ghost lollipops with Tootsie Pops… the list goes on and on.  Again- they can be used for lots of little things, these super soft KLEENEX® Ultra Soft Tissues.

The little things mean so much.

kleenex-ultra-soft

What ways do you celebrate the little things? And how do you use KLEENEX® Ultra Soft Tissues?

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Post Vacation Meal Ideas

It’s summertime and vacation season is here! Whether you’re just getting ready for a vacation, just returning, or planning one a few months out, you know that feeling of returning home and not wanting to plan dinner. Sometimes it’s easy to forget that you need to have an idea for when you get home.

 

With that being said, there are lots of easy post-vacation dinner ideas on this list that will help if you’re stuck in a rut after returning home from vacation. From chicken to pasta to tacos, this list is sure to give you plenty of ideas to whip something up in just a few minutes to satisfy the whole family!

Post Vacation Meal Ideas

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Frozen Pizza and veggies.

 

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We always choose fresh when possible but when you are coming home from a vacation and don’t have much in the fridge- steam some frozen broccoli, green beans, vegetable medley, carrots, peas, etc. and round out your meal that way.  You’ll have the entire meal on the table in about 20 minutes start to finish when doing all frozen foods.  If you have any salad fixings, that’s our go-to for pizza meals.

 

pizza-vegetale

 

To learn more about Ristorante by Dr. Oetker, be sure to visit their website and like them on Facebook! 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!

 

Burgers, hot dogs, on the grill.

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When I buy burger meat, I pre-make my patties and separate them with parchment paper.  That way, I can grab enough for a meal and go, and we always have some on hand for just-in-case.

 

Just because it’s a burger and hot dog night doesn’t mean it has to be boring.  If you are making your own burgers, mix in some seasonings and add a topping tray to your table.  I’ve been all about gorgonzola on my burgers this summer, with iceburg lettuce as my ‘buns’ and I love it.

 

If you buy premade burgers- maybe grab some different varieties to have on hand. I’ve found some great bufffalo blue cheese chicken burgers, and some divine black bean and salsa flavored veggie burgers that are just as easy and fast as “traditional” burgers, but change things up a bit. I’ve actually grown to love black bean burgers since my daughter stopped eating meat and often make that for myself in lieu of a regular burger, just for a change of pace.

 

Tacos

vegan plantbased lentil taco recipe

Tacos are quick and easy. If you are at my house, and you mention the word tacos, you’ll hear “TACO TUESDAY” for the next hour or so, followed with giggles.  Tacos are a great way to please everyone, and you really can just toss the fillings and toppings into bowls on the table and everyone can make their own. One thing *I* like about tacos is that you can thaw the ground meat while you cook it- super easy to do.  We also use black beans frequently in place of the meat.  It’s a pretty safe meal that most of us enjoy- and takes little time to prep.

 

We like to get the blue corn taco shells when we see them- with tomatoes and or salsa plus cheese, we call them our red, white and blue tacos. Ending vacation can seem like the end of the fun, especially to kids, so why not have a little fun with the first few days home?

Breakfast for dinner!

sausage quiche with hash brown crust

Almost always a favorite (around here at least), you can do eggs, pancakes, waffles- quiche, omelets… it’s a quick and easy way to get the family fed.

 

We’ve done sausage stuffed pancakes many times- makes for a fun meal that has enough bulk to it.  Add lots of fruits on the side!

french toast sausage pan

I think my favorite thing to do for breakfast for dinner is plain old eggs and hashbrowns.  I don’t like how LONG it takes to make hashbrowns, so we grab our waffle maker and make the hashbrowns while we cook the eggs.  Sometimes I’m a scrambled girl, others? I’m an over-hard and then cook them for another few minutes girl.

 

Breakfast sandwiches are another idea for a post vacation meal.  Use what you have- bagel, English muffin, bread, even a pancake.

 

What are your post vacation meal ideas?

 

This post is part of a sponsored Ambassadorship with Ristorante.  Opinions are my own.

 

 

LeapFrog LeapPad3 Tablet for Kids

A few weeks ago, LeapFrog’s new LeapPad3 tablet for kids arrived at our house for review.   We had the original LeapPad which we all enjoyed, and had actually shared with some friends of ours not long ago.  I was very intrigued by the release of the 3rd ‘generation’ of the LeapPad- toys from LeapFrog were among the first we purchased when our oldest was a baby, and we’ve always thought the brand to be excellent quality and worth the money.The  improvements and updates on the LeapPad3 promimsed to be great. I like that they can be safe on the web, they can have fun with games, edit photos and make videos. Find FREE LeapPad Games!

leappad3-leapfrog-tablet-kids

There were 2 things that I didn’t love about the former LeapPad that have changed, and improved, so so much.  The screen clarity (so much higher resolution now!) and a rechargeable battery.  The screen resolution is MUCH higher now, and much easier for kids and parents to see and use. As for the battery- I hated using batteries and disposing of them so frequently- as I do with just about anything in our house. I love being able to recharge things as we go and not have to add waste to the world.  6 hours of battery time is a LOT. My kids are now 5, 7 and 9 – they all use it easily and it’s nice that the battery will hold on for more than a short time for other kids’ turns.

leappad3-tablet-kids

LeapFrog’s always been about toys that let them learn while they play- the LeapPad 3 is like the intro to the world of tablets, but in a safe, comfortable place that allows fun and learning with a lot of room for creativity without risk of inappropriate content. Each of the kids has their own login for the tablet, so no one can take over someone else’s score on a game, etc.  There’s a spot for a guest to login as well.

Built in wifi is an update that arrived with the LeapPad3. LeapSearch is powered by Zui-created by LeapFrog experts to be age appropriate and safe for kids- offering over 1000 videos, games and more for kids to explore.  They’re online, and learning to navigate the internet, but in a sort of cocoon as it were, so no risk of adult content or them seeing something you really don’t want them to see. Just because THEY think they are ready to handle the big old internet doesn’t mean they are.  I’m 40, and I’m a blogger- and not twice but 3 times my husband and I have gone to search for a local store with a name that could also be interpreted as adult in nature, and been taken quite by surprise at the search results and images that came after we hit enter.  I don’t want my kids having those experiences, but I do want them to be able to successfully use computers, tablets and laptops- for good or bad, technology is here and part of our lives. It’s in our homes and it’s in our classrooms.

leappad3-search

A fab new feature of the LeapPad3  is the built-in Wi-Fi and LeapSearch which is powered by Zui, a kid-friendly selection of more than 1,000 games, videos and more. Anything and everything your child can access has been pre-screened by the LeapFrog experts to be safe and age-appropriate. Want more assurance? Use the parent mode,  and control the wi-fi and manage the content your children have access to.

My only hesitation with the LeapPad3 is that the games available for purchase for the device are on the higher side and could be prohibitive for some families. I have noticed that I’m seeing more and more sales, coupons and deals for games and cartridges (we opt to get ours online, via download, no cartridges to lose and it’s in our account, available to download again later if need be). There are always ways to save, and I would give a full five stars to this device in a review if the games and apps were at a lower price point.

What do you look for in a tablet for kids?

Thanks to LeapFrog for sending the LeapPad3 for review, via our affiliation with MomSelect.

GoldieBlox Building Toys for Girls #lookatgoldie #giveaway

Last Christmas, we gave our youngest daughter 2 GoldieBlox sets.  It was the beginning of something beautiful.  Building toys- for GIRLS- that aren’t super girlie, and aren’t dumbed down.  My kids LOVE building toys.  All 3 of them.  My younger 2 are more into it than my oldest, but she still enjoys building too. Many of the sets designed for girls don’t get as much play time, and definitely don’t seem to present the same challenges to kids that the “boy” sets do.  Or didn’t, until Debbie Sterling came up with a building toy designed for girls to encourage them in math and engineering concepts- GoldieBlox.

goldieblox-blox-star

Sometimes you just have to rock the sunglasses when building.  You just have to be a Blox Star. 

What is it about these GoldieBlox sets that keeps the kids coming back for more?  There’s a clean simplicity in each set- a story, and a building toy to go along with each.  There’s not a lot of attention paid to making it “pretty” or even “cute” but instead, attention paid to make these sets playable, buildable, to keep them coming back for more. That’s what draws me to the line. Although we do WANT a GoldieBlox figure (which I hear is coming out for holiday time this year), she’s not necessary to feel like you have the whole toy.

goldieblox-reading

Also, each of the sets (ranging in price from $19.99 to $29.99, and an extension kit for $9.99) can work with the other sets.  A visit to GoldieBlox.com offers more plans and ideas to further use these building toys for girls, which means kids can expand their play and build on those engineering and math concepts. There’s a Solid Gold(ie) package, with 3 GoldieBlox sets, the expansion pack and a BloxStar shirt for $99.95….which we ordered this week for ourselves- we have the sets, but the price is great, we wanted the expansion pack, and now we have 3 gifts readily available for friends, plus a super cool shirt for my little BloxStar to wear :) !

goldieblox-dunk-tank-assembly

As I said, we’ve had a few GoldieBlox sets for a while.  The sets we received for this #lookatgoldie campaign, the Parade Float and Dunk Tank, were lots of fun and all of us have had TONS of fun playing with the Dunk Tank. There’s been talk of building a dunk tank in the yard now so the kids can try to dunk their dad.  I’ll keep you posted if that happens.  Perhaps a video…. in the meantime, here’s a video of the GoldieBlox and the Dunk Tank set!

 

 

Building Toys for Girls can be awesome and NOT dumbed down!

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GoldieBlox and the Dunk Tank

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In GoldieBlox and the Dunk Tank, Goldie has to find a way to get Nacho clean. The only problem is: Nacho hates water and loves being a dirty dog. After many tries to get Nacho clean, Goldie finally comes up with the perfect contraption. As kids read along, they help Goldie build a dunk tank (and learn about hinges and levers) to get Nacho clean so everyone can go to the carnival on time.

  • A book series plus construction set where Goldie and friends devise a plan to get Nacho clean in time for the carnival.
  • Builds spatial skills, engineering principles (hinges and levers) and confidence in problem-solving.
  • Comes equipped with 3 design ideas and unlimited building possibilities.
  • Compatible with all other GoldieBlox toys.
Skill set: Hinge and lever
Includes: Storybook, 1 animal figurine, 1 bouncy ball, 2 wheels, 9 short axles, 18 long axles, 12 blocks, 10 spacers, 2 targets, 3 design templates   

GoldieBlox and the Parade Float

goldieblox-parade-float

In this much-anticipated sequel, Goldie’s friends Ruby and Katinka compete in a princess pageant with the hopes of riding in the town parade. When Katinka loses the crown, Ruby and Goldie build something great together, teaching their friends that creativity and friendship are more important than any pageant.

  • A book series plus construction set introducing Ruby, Goldie’s best friend and princess-turned-engineer.
  • Builds spatial skills, engineering principles, and confidence in problem-solving.
  • Comes equipped with 9 design ideas, a DIY project, and unlimited building possibilities.
  • Compatible with all other GoldieBlox toys.

Skill Set: Wheel and axle

Includes: Storybook, 3 animal figurines, 7 wheels, 6 blocks, 9 short axles, 4 long axles, 4 spacers, 1 band, 1 ribbon, 9 design ideas

goldieblox-parade-float

One reader will win a prize pack including GoldieBlox and the Dunk Tank and GoldieBlox and the Parade Float! 

 

 

This #lookatgoldie post is sponsored by GoldieBlox through our affiliation with The Motherhood. Opinions are my own. 

Thinning Hair Products #Cerafill

I have a lot of hair. Like, a lot a lot.  It’s super fine, though…and the numbers are on the decline since kid #1 was born 9 years ago. I thought the hair loss would stop after the “6 months” people kept telling me about for post-partum hair loss. It never did. I wonder sometimes if I still keep and kept losing hairs so much because I had so many pregnancies in a row- 6 total in 5 1/2 years- 3 miscarried, but still. The hormones maybe did a number on my hairs? I’m not super vain. I’m really not.  But I miss my hair. I don’t like seeing my scalp through my hair. I’ve been so lucky for long and I feel like the tides are turning…and I’m not ashamed to admit I’ve looked into thinning hair products to get some help. thinning-hair-front-cerafill I’ve actually had to start using smaller hair ties for my hair.  That’s how much my thinning hair has affected me! Dislike! I am participating in a Vibrant Influencer network campaign for Cerafill powered by Redken. I am receiving a fee for posting; however, the opinions expressed in this post are my own. I am in no way affiliated with Redken and do not earn a commission or percent of sales. This is why when I had the chance to try Redken Cerafill I agreed readily. I was to try these products for 2 weeks, although Idid a full 4. While I’m not going to tell you that my hair now rivals Rapunzel’s in thickness (or length… I guess not color), I CAN see a difference, and that makes me happy. Like I said, I’m not super vain. But my hair’s always been this one way, for most of my 40 years on this earth, and the changes aren’t ones that I’m so excited about. I am horrible with selfies but here’s the after- I can see a little change, can you? thinning-hair-post-cerafill-after-pic *Just a note- my hair is actually clean in both of these shots.  Today, well, it’s a little humid out, can you tell? I have frizzy everything!  There’s more to GET frizzy so I’ll take it. cerafill-defy-thinning-hair-products

What IS Cerafill?

Thickening shampoo and conditioner system for normal to thin hair.

Instant hair thickening with Dense FX* It’s like gaining up to 9,000 more hairs after one use!**

The normal growth cycle of a single hair strand can last anywhere from two to six years. When hair is healthy and growing at a steady rate, it grows about a half-inch per month. When hair is thinning, the growth cycle shortens and stays in the actively growing phase for shorter periods of time.

What Cerafill does, with Ceramide, SP-94 + ZINC PCA, and Filloxane, is to strengthen, nourish and protect each hair strand.  The Minoxidil works to thicken the hairs individually.

All Cerafill products are safe for pregnant women and people undergoing chemotherapy, except Minoxidil. Minoxidil may be harmful if used when pregnant or breast-feeding. See Minoxidil Drug Facts box and product insert. Regarding clients using Minoxidil who are undergoing medical treatments such as chemotherapy, a question of this nature would need to be addressed by the patient’s physician as every case would be different.

Want to give Redken Cerafill a try? Check out their Salon Finder! Would I have tried this product? I don’t know.  Perhaps, if I saw it in a salon.  Having tried it now, I AM planning to get more of it as I run out (my conditioner is almost gone). I love the Redken brand and it does work to help my hair look and feel fuller. That has me sold.

Do you struggle to find thinning hair products too?

IOGEAR ScreenShare, MediaShair Hub, and TuneTap

We live in an increasingly connected world and every day brings new products that allow us to share data across different devices.  These three new products from IOGear are aimed at simplifying the mess of managing media files across all of your different devices.

Screenshare – Wireless Mobile and PC to HDTV

First we have the Screenshare, which allows you to connect your HDTV to any wireless device and show movies, share pictures and play music over the TV.  The unit is a small, black box that will fit anywhere near your TV without taking up a ton of space.  One nice touch is that the LED lights for power are very low intensity so they don’t add to the array of lights you probably already have in your home, which can be distracting when watching a movie in the dark.  The box includes quick setup instructions and to use the basic functionality of the device, it is very quick. Within a few minutes I was playing music off my phone to the TV and a few minutes more had me streaming videos.

This Mama Loves Iogear Review

After plugging the power adapter to the micro USB port, use the included HDMI cable and simply connect the unit to an unused HDMI port on your TV and select it.  ScreenShare is compatible with a couple of different standards, so the setup varies a little bit depending on your TV and phone combination.  There are a couple of quirks to setup that you need to pay attention to.  The first is that you need to have the app downloaded and ready on your device before you connect your device to the hub’s wireless signal or you won’t be able to use it.  The other is that there is no way to manually input a network to the hub, so if you want to connect to your existing home network (to share off a PC or laptop) your network ID has to be broadcasting publicly (an annoyance for those of us who are paranoid about our network security).  Configuring the device to work on my existing home network was quite a bit more complicated as I had to change settings in my router, but this allowed me to stream videos without using up data from my mobile plan.

All in all, this is a very cool little device that will be keeping a place on my entertainment center for some time to come.

 

MediaShair Hub

The MediaShair Hub is basically the opposite of the Screenshare – right down to the color, which is white instead of black.  This unit allows you to broadcast a signal wirelessly with up to 7 other devices, so that people in different parts of the house (or car) can see the same content. You can stream content from a thumb drive, SD card or portable hard drive.  The hub also can act as a wireless router by hooking it up to a wired internet connection.  As one final bonus, you can also charge a phone or tablet from the built in battery in the Hub. The setup is again quite quick and easy, simply download the appropriate app for your device and connect to the Hub.  The box includes a car adapter and short USB cord.  We have a family vacation coming up in a few weeks and this will be a great way to keep the kids occupied in the car.

This Mama Loves Iogear Review

TuneTap

The last piece we have is the TuneTap, which allows you to pair your home stereo system to any Bluetooth compatible device.  The unit is again a small black square that should blend in with the rest of your A/V equipment.  The box includes a USB cord, power adapter and a 3.5mm to RCA cable adapter.  As with the other two units, setup is quick and painless, simply plug in the power cord, connect to an open port on your home stereo and then pair your device over Bluetooth.  If you have an Android phone that has Near Field Communications, it is even easier, as you can simply tap the phone on the unit and it pairs seamlessly.  You control song selection through your phone as usual, making this great for working around the house listening to music as it works through walls and around corners, unlike your system remote.  The range seems to be about 30 feet so as long as I’m on the main floor of the house, there are no skips or pauses in playback.

This Mama Loves Iogear Review

All three devices are well constructed and come packaged in a plastic tray and have protective plastic on them, so they arrive undamaged.  The quick setup cards are clear and instructions are easy to follow with a lot of screenshots to guide you.  Styling is very subtle, these devices are here to help you out, not be show pieces in and of themselves.  Each one fills a very useful niche and will be getting plenty of use around our house.

These items were received for consideration from IOGEAR.  All opinions are my own.

Supporting old injuries

I’ve started Couch 2 5k again.  (Yes, again…). I need NO excuses. None.  Zip.  I’ve decided that I’m going to support my weak spots while I start this journey so that they can start to strengthen and not hold me back. I don’t need an old injury popping up and messing with my progress! I’d rather take the time in supporting old injures to prevent a relapse than nursing a re-injured part back to health!

supporting old injuries

I’m actually really liking the  new Brand Elastic Bandage with the improved ACE™ Brand Clip. They have all the same features and qualities we’ve trusted as long as I can remember, but the new fastener leaves those old metal clips with the prickly prongs behind. If you have used an ACE™ Brand Bandage ever, I’m guessing you may have also poked yourself or snagged a piece of clothing on one of those fasteners!  Pain in the neck, they were.  The new ACE™ Brand Clip is MUCH better, feels more secure for keeping that bandage securely in place, and the best part? No stuck finger, no snagged clothes.  Bonus!

 

ace-brand-elastic-bandage-clip

 

The ACE™ Brand Elastic Bandage with ACE™ Brand Clip come in 2 sizes- 3″ and 4″. That gives a lot of options and versatility. I need to support my right knee, I had a bit of surgery on it years and years ago and was told it wouldn’t ever be 100% again, and it’s absolutely not- I’m always aware of it when I move and exercise and want to be sure I’m protecting it before it’s injured again…what’s that saying, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure?

supporting-knee-injuries

For me, I think it would be better stated, a wrap of prevention is worth a pound lost!

supporting old injuries knee

Add another layer of confidence to your performance with the ACE™ Brand Elastic Bandage with ACE™ Brand Clip. The innovative fastener on the ACE™ Brand Elastic Bandage is quick, comfortable and secure –– so you can keep giving 100%. The fastener lets you adjust on the fly and won’t snag clothes. That means I can do my slow, turtle pace up the many (too many) hills in my neighborhood and not worry that the bandage will slip out of place!

ace-brand-elastic-bandage-clip-table
  • The ACE™ Brand Clip snaps in place and holds securely
  • Easy to adjust
  • Prevents clothing snags
  • Provides customized compression
  • Provides firm support and compression for sprains and strains
  • Bandage retains elasticity after repeated use and washings

Do you use ACE™ Brand Elastic Bandages to support old injuries?

 

This post is sponsored by our friends at 3M.  Product and compensation were received. Opinions are my own.

Jimmy Dean expands past breakfast

Jimmy Dean has long been known for their breakfast fare. They’ve expanded past breakfast into lunch and dinner fare, and done so quite nicely.  Delights by Jimmy Dean line is available in eight varieties, including four savory sandwich offerings each containing two snack-size sandwiches and four flavor-packed entree bowls, all for 300 calories or less. These new products offer slow-cooked taste in just minutes right from your freezer. Some of the sandwich offerings come on Pretzel Buns (which is a HUGE favorite in this house!) This post is brought to you by Jimmy Dean through our affiliation with Mom it Forward.  Opinions are my own.

jimmy-dean-delights

You’ll find these sandwiches and bowls at Walmart stores, and I’m seeing them in more and more local groceries as well.  They are priced affordably and offer a great grab-and-go option for busy days (and nights).    The sandwich is loaded up with ham, cheddar cheese, and applewood-smoked bacon on a country bun- loads of flavor, and still just 300 calories. My husband just snuck out of my house with the last Hickory Smoked Turkey Breast I had in the freezer for lunch! He was running late this morning because he’d helped the kids with a project they were working on and didn’t have time to make a full lunch, so grabbing a Jimmy Dean was an easy option for him.

jimmy-dean-hickory-smoked-turkey-breast

 

The Pulled Chicken sandwiches called to me from the freezer section at the store. I LOVE pulled pork and I haven’t ever done pulled chicken here at the house.  I’ve been craving pulled something lately and when I mention it as a menu suggestion the family kind of looks at me like “really??” because they are of the mindset that it would be better in cooler weather. So naturally, I grabbed some of these to keep in my freezer so I can enjoy my sweet, tangly barbecue sauce on pulled chicken whenever I want to. (Thank you, Jimmy Dean!)

jimmy-dean-pulled-chicken

 

Add a few fresh fruits and veggies on the plate with your sandwich or bowl and you’ll have a complete meal- in just minutes.  My littler two don’t usually have big appetites at lunch, so they each had one of the sandwiches with watermelon and carrots at the pool for lunch last week.  They love slider-sized sandwiches- easy to hold onto, and really, a fun size :) – and they gobbled their lunches up without complaint. While we don’t do frozen foods every day, they are nice to have around when we’re short on time and need something to grab and go.

jimmy-dean-delights-pulled-chicken

Learn more about these fab new sandwiches and bowls over at JimmyDean.com.

Which of the Delights would you like to try first?

Cheesecake Factory’s #SayCheesecakeContest #NationalCheesecakeDay

My heart rate seems to have doubled, and my breathing becomes quick and shallow. There isn’t a mirror around, but I’m almost positive my pupils must be dilated much larger than normal. I peer around, just to double check that no one else is around to watch me. I know that they aren’t. I checked the house thoroughly, and planned my timing perfectly. All to make sure that I am all-alone. I told myself that I wouldn’t do this…but here I am again. Perhaps it would be okay if this didn’t happen so often. But it does. And once again I’m finding myself indulging in my guilty pleasure. My secret addiction. Cheesecake. This blog post is part of a paid SocialMoms and The Cheesecake Factory blogging program.


What were you thinking?!?!?

 

If you can relate to this, than you can feel my pain! If you can’t, you’ve probably never visited the Cheesecake Factory. That’s where my guilty pleasure started! Before visiting there, I only knew of two types of cheesecake: strawberry and cherry. Upon entering my first time, however, I was transformed into a world of rich and delicious flavors, plenty of choices, and total loss of self-restraint! It was just that good.

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Luckily for me, July is my month.  That’s because July 30th is National Cheesecake Day! Honestly. I couldn’t even make this up if I wanted to! An entire day devoted solely to honoring the all mighty cheesecake, because it’s just that good.  I personally think it deserves more than just one day, and The Cheesecake Factory agreed with me! That’s why they decided to extend National Cheesecake Factory for an entire additional day!

 

Here are the details:

 National Cheesecake Day Celebration at Cheesecake Factory

When: July 30th – 31st

Where: The Cheesecake Factory locations Nationwide

What: Experience 30 flavors of cheesecake at HALF PRICE when you dine in

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If you think an entire two days dedicated to cheesecake is silly, I challenge you to pop in to The Cheesecake Factory on one of the dates above, and THEN tell me the same. There’s something to fit everyone’s palate, and you won’t be disappointed, I promise.

 

But WAIT….There’s More!!!!

 

As if this awesome celebration isn’t enough, The Cheesecake Factory is uping the stakes on National Cheesecake Day even more with an AWESOME contest with phenomenal prizes!

 Check out the #SayCheesecakeContest !

saycheesecakecontest selfies

The Prizes:

 

  • One GRAND PRIZE of $4,000 will be awarded!
  • Nine FIRST PRIZES of $100 will be awarded!

 

How to enter:

 

1.)   Head on over to the Say Cheesecake Contest registration form and register.

2.)   Share a selfie with your favorite slice cheesecake between 7/30/2014 and 7/31/2014. Share it on Instagram  or Twitter with hash tag #SayCheesecakeContest or on The Cheesecake Factory Facebook page #SayCheesecakeContest tab.

 

That’s all! Easy entry, great prizes! I can’t wait until National Cheesecake Day, and plan on trying some new flavors that I haven’t yet tasted. I’m excited (if you can’t tell).
LOOK AT ALL THE CHEESECAKE LOVE!
Follow SocialMoms’s board National Cheesecake Day Celebration! #NationalCheesecakeDay #SayCheesecakeContest on Pinterest.

What’s your favorite Cheesecake flavor?

 

“This blog post is part of a paid SocialMoms and The Cheesecake Factory blogging program. The opinions and ideas expressed here are my own.”