Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Make a Difference Monday -- Healthy Choices

I am late! I do realize today is Tuesday and not Monday, but, well, better late than never, right? :-)

This week, I am trying to make a difference by making healthy choices. Truth is, I am a nominally healthy eater, I exercise on occasion, and get at least 7 hours of sleep most nights.

But I could do better. A lot better.

I am one of those blessed people (don't hate me...it is hereditary, I assure you!) that can sit around eating pretty much whatever I want and never gain an ounce.
I said don't hate me!

Believe it or not, there are negatives to that!! Let me explain...I can eat whatever I want with seemingly no consequences.

But there are consequences to every poor choice we make, and poor eating/exercise habits are no different. I am beginning to realize that I do need to make healthy choices...for my sake, for my husband's sake, and for the sake of my children who will follow in my footsteps.  Aargh!

So, what changes have I been making?

*I bought whole wheat bread...the good stuff. Not the enriched wheat bread that is only a step up from white.
*We are keeping track of what we eat and how often we exercise. To do this, we are using Supertracker, a free website that charts our progress in achieving health and fitness goals.
*We are snacking better. Instead of chips, we are eating sunflower seeds, nuts and trail mix. Instead of juice, we are drinking water. Instead of candy, we are eating fresh fruit. I'm including more vegetables with meals and eating fewer sauces and less butter.
 *We are more conscious of the amount of protein we are getting each day, something that our diet lacked. This lack of protein left us tired and less focused. I can already feel a decided difference!
*I have cut back on coffee. I know, I know...coffee is good for you, right? Well, the sweetened flavored creamers I use are most definitely not!

How about exercise? Well...I worked out twice. Call me old, call me a lame duck, but I hurt so bad that I just gave up! Now that I've had a few days to stop hurting, I plan to pick up exercising...but maybe something a little less intense this time. :-)

So, how have you made a difference this week? What are you doing to improve the quality of your life and the lives of those around you?

After all, if I want to live a long and healthy life I need to start making a difference today. How about you?

Monday, January 30, 2012

Don't Forget to Enter THIS Giveaway!

You won't want to miss your chance at this EPIC giveaway, hosted by Sparkling Reviews!  To celebrate 2000 followers, they are giving away this:

Crazy good! So for all the details and your chance to enter...hurry on over HERE!

Giveaway ends February 1.

Hurry Up! Before It's TOO LATE!

RUN! Hurry!! RUN over HERE and enter to win THIS:

A 13 Inch Macbook Air and Apple TV Giveaway at Sparkling Reviews!!

HURRY! This ends TONIGHT!!!

(Review) Children's Advil

I recently received a sample of Children's Advil to review from smiley360.com. (see my review of smiley360 here.)

Now, maybe I am just a creature of habit and just stick with the same ol', but how could I have missed that Advil makes a children's formula? I love how affective the adult formula is, so I am thrilled to have the opportunity to try the same great medicine for my kids.

What I like:

*I know it will work when I need it to. Advil is a name that I know and trust.
*The bottle I received is for ages 2-11 and is perfect for my kids' ages.
*The flavor is white-grape--something my picky kids will like!
*It works up to 8 hours--long enough to get through the night.
*It is dye-free! That is a real plus for my daughter that is allergic to many dyes and artificial ingredients.
*My children's pediatrician recommends ibuprofen over acetaminophen. 

What I don't like:

*This contains a preservative called sodium benzoate. Now, most of you are saying, SO? And, for most of you, sodium benzoate is not a big deal. But, unfortunately, my son happens to be allergic to it.

I will say, though, that I really appreciate the fact that it is labeled as an ingredient! To my knowledge, the FDA does not require it to be on the label, so I always appreciate a company that clearly and specifically  labels all ingredients.

I pray my children will stay healthy, but when the inevitable flu or fever arrives I am prepared. It is comforting to know that my children will be cared for by me...and a medicine I can feel good about. 

Disclosure: I received free product to facilitate my review. All opinions are honest and my own and were in no way influenced by smiley360 or Children's Advil.

**Like Children's Advil on FB for exclusive offers and information.**

Use as directed.
For product usage, product label or more information, go to  www.childrensadvil.com.

Smiley360--A Great Opportunity to Review and Get Rewarded

I recently found a site called smiley360.com where I signed up for my first free sample within minutes.

What is smiley360, you ask? From their web site:
"In a nutshell, smiley360.com is a network of consumers. Our consumers participate in our social media programs and receive different products and services. They talk—the world listens."
As a smiley360 member, we are given the opportunity to review new products and services and give honest feedback. And that feedback influences the final product. 

 Free sign-up. Free samples of brand new products and services. My voice is heard.

Count me in!

And the more reviews I do,  the more opportunities I have to do even more exciting product reviews and even the possibility of becoming a smiley360 brand manager.

If you are interested in finding out more or joining to receive your own free products and to have your voice heard, go HERE.

Stay tuned...I have my first smiley360 review coming up next!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Have You Ever Seen Such an Epic Giveaway??

You aren't going to believe this one! To celebrate 2000 followers, Sparkling Reviews is giving away this:

a Flat Screen 73" TV

1 Sony Home Theater Set (includes Blu Ray Player , iPod dock, and speakers)
Yep, that's One thousand smackeroos!

And this is $1,000, too!

So RUN, don't walk, over HERE to enter. As if I need to tell you that!

Oh, and this giveaway ends Feb 1.

I Will Dream About This Tonight...

I really want to win a TV for my sweet husband. I really do. So, I'm searching "giveaway TV" on twitter, and I find this:

Sparking Reviews is giving away a Macbook Air and an Apple TV. Woah.

Now, I really want to win an Apple TV for my husband.

And a Macbook Air for me. tee hee

If you want a chance, hurry HERE to enter. And I mean hurry. My name Winner will be announced on Facebook tomorrow.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Make a Difference Monday - Week Two

Last Monday marked a new beginning for me...a resolution, if you will. I resolve to Make a Difference. No longer will I use the familiar excuses of What can just one person do that matters...or I am too busy...or a million others that stand ready in my brain. 

Someday, when I am old (my kids think I'm already there), I want to look back and say that my life mattered...that I made a difference, even in some small way.

I have decided to journal my 'small ways' each week. And I hope you will join me, because...

YOU can make a difference, too.


I had planned to write about something totally different today, but instead I find myself drawn again to the thing that has consumed my thoughts this week. It happened on Wednesday. I got the email that changed the way I think about strangers. It has made a difference in my life.

And I hope it will make a difference in yours.

The email I received talked about the new book that River Jordan wrote called Praying for Strangers: An Adventure of the Human Spirit. In it, she describes how in 2009 she began a New Year's Resolution to pray for one stranger every day.

This may not seem like much...but it grew to something much bigger than one person. It has changed her life and the lives of many others.

And, this week it changed mine.

Here's the link to the e-mail: Praying for Strangers: The Resolution

Read the article. Then check out her website. Read the stories of the gazillions of people that have made River Jordan's resolution their own. 
It is a.maz.ing. (insert goosebumps here)

So, this week, I became one of them. I took on the resolution. I am praying for strangers.

And that is making a difference in my life.

The people around me are no longer strangers...they are potential prayer-recipients. God is opening my heart to care even more for those around me, to see their needs (rather than rush by them) and to *dare I say it* reach out and help.*gulp*

I'm excited about this borrowed resolution. And, I admit, a little scared.  But more excited than scared.

After all, I want to make a difference.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Make a Difference Monday

I was trying to decide on a regular post for my blog, what my blog is really about, etc., etc., and what I have come up with is Make a Difference Monday. 

I want my life to make a difference. I want my kids' lives to make a difference.

So, every Monday, I will post about some small way that I have made a difference during the previous week. I would LOVE it if you would comment with a way that you made a difference this week. That would be awesome! Would you do that for me??

Now for this week's post:

I love to give presents anonymously. I just love the thought of causing someone to stop and think about WHO could have possibly done...whatever. Then they go through all of the wonderful people in their lives, how many special ones they know that could have thought to do something special for them. And, in the process, they realize just how blessed they are. And that is the real gift.

Well, I was able to share my winnings with a very special family...anonymously.

So, don't tell, okay?

There is a young couple in our church that is on deputation (trying to raise support) to go to the Mission Field. They have three young children and another on the way. They live with the husbands' parents...or they did, but the parents are moving so they are looking for a place.

Anyway, I recently won a $25 GC to Burger King.

And I gave the card to the young family in our church...anonymously. How FUN!

I remember what a challenge suppertime can be when you're pregnant and trying to keep up with three active little ones. And they are on the road so much trying to raise support.

I like to think that my little gift made a difference and brought a smile to their faces.

Now it's your turn...What are you doing to make a difference? Please comment below and share!

*making a difference*


Thursday, January 12, 2012

Enter to Win a Mega Makeup Prize Pack from Valentine Kisses!

Valentine Kisses is hosting a HUGE giveaway right now. Just look at this!!

Every woman's dream-come-true!! It would be so much fun to open this package, right?? There is so much here, that you can surely find something to share to brighten someone's day!  So head on over to Valentine Kisses blog and enter this amazing giveaway, which ends January 31.

*happy entering*


Enter to Win a Pepto Prize Pack

Mommy Living the Life of Riley is giving away a huge Pepto-sponsored prize pack worth $255!

Pepto has put together an awesome prize pack to cover all of your post-holiday needs. Here is some of what is included:
And of course, this:

For full details, and to enter for your chance to win, go HERE. But hurry! Giveaway ends January 13th!

*happy entering*

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Enter to Win a Cool Kids' Backpack!

Indiana Coupon Savings & Giveaways is giving away the COOLest backpack! Have you seen these??

They are made by Optari. And my favorite part about them? You can add these:

These fobs can be added to create personalized bags! How fun!!

To enter for a chance to win one of these amazing backpacks, visit HERE.  Hurry! This giveaway ends January 12.

*happy entering*


Enter to Win Dragonfly Soaps

Indiana Coupon Savings & Giveaways is giving away Dragonfly handmade natural soap to TWO blessed winners.

Aren't these pretty? I love to use and give handmade soaps!! For your chance to win some, enter HERE. Giveaway ends January 12.


Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Enter to Win a $50 Restaurant.com Giftcard

Just Us Four is giving away a $50 gift card to Restaurant.com.

Enter HERE for your chance to win! Giveaway ends January 12.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Gooseberry Patch Quick & Easy Christmas Cookbook - Review

I am blessed. I have a warm house, a loving husband, three wonderful and healthy children, and great food to eat.

And I love to cook all of the great food we have...especially when I find a great cookbook with great recipes!

This is one of those cookbooks:

I was fortunate enough to win this from Mommy I'm Hungry!  I love Gooseberry Patch cookbooks!! In fact, I now own eighteen of their cookbooks. Um, yeah, I love them.

And this one is packed full of great recipes. Like:

                                   Skillet Chicken Cordon Bleu
                                  Powdered Sugar Sandies 
                                 Slow-Cooker Chicken & Noodles


These are some of my favorite Gooseberry Cookbooks:

To order your own copy of the Quick & Easy Christmas Cookbook, or any of their other wonderful products you can go here: http://www1.gooseberrypatch.com/

Note: I was not given anything in exchange for this review. All opinions are my own. I truly love these cookbooks!

*happy sharing*