Of course Dev finishing her novel so early is probably what spurred me on the most. If she can do 50,000 words, surely I could do one piddly post a day. Hehe yeah, we're pretty competitive for divas.
Those of you who entered, how'd you do? Did you finish either NaNoWriMo or NaBloPoMo? If so, congrats! If not- you'll do it next time- I have faith in you.
Some of the things we do to cut costs around the holidays are:
Buy baking ingredients when they are on sale then freezing or storing them in airtight containers until needed.
Shop where they match the lowest price.
Shop when they are giving cash or store credit back when you spend a certain amount to really stretch your dollars.
For the gamers in your life, a Gamefly subscription lets them play all the newest games without the huge expense.
A popular gift here when we have to shop for families - instead of several cheap items we get one family gift or make up a movie night or game night gift basket.
One final tip- save some of your money (or be like me and ask for after holiday spending $ for your gift from the hubby who has no clue) and you can really score and get a lot more for your money. Stock up on decorations, wrapping items, seasonal items like Christmas Eve PJ's.
For more tips or to add your post, check here.
About this TwitterMoms Blogging Program
Yep, we're at it again. Pardon our dust, we wanted to redecorate for the holidays and after learning that it can be hard on the eyes with the darker colors we went in a whole different direction. Hopefully, this will make it easier for all of our readers to view our content and enter our giveaways. We certainly want everyone who takes the time to visit to enjoy their time here.
What do you think? I am really liking the new look- but maybe that's because this time I did it all myself with no help (except the little divas had a say in the colors).
You'll notice I changed the button as well, so if you are sporting our button we'd appreciate it if you would snag the new code.
Thanks a gazillion!!!
*** Update- thanks for the feedback, we really appreciate it and want your experience here at Our Loonyverse to be an enjoyable one.
In an effort to help make the page load faster we've moved most of the buttons and banners to inside pages.
Here is where you can find the blogs we enjoy. Here is where we hang out and have memberships. Here are the carnivals and festivities and tons of awesome giveaways around the blogosphere.
We want to continue supporting other bloggers in any way that we can, but our readers' are very important to us and we want to make your visit as pleasurable as possible.
Keep those comments coming, and thanks again.
Sherry aka dddiva
While God willing the teens and others in the photos that were ridiculed will never find out about it, it is in fact a form of cyber bullying and can't be tolerated, especially since it was not done by a child who didn't know better but a grown woman who holds herself up as a mother and a role-model and blogging is her full time job- shame on you!
Unlike the classic schoolyard bully, who shouted insults across the playground or intimidated victims into handing over lunch money, today's cyber bullies don't need to be physically present to do their dirty work. They can reach their "targets" any time and anywhere, using a variety of new
Although most perpetrators (and victims) are tweens or teens, troubled adults have been known to participate in cyber bullying (although some feel that if adults are involved, it shouldn't be called cyber bullying).
There is also a list of 7 things you can do to protect your children from cyber bullies.
There are all types of abuse, and don't kid yourself thinking bullying isn't one of them. Keep your kids safe and as always, feel free to post your own Safe Sunday and link up here.
Here are a few of the pics we took of Ian on his b-day. He was in such a mood- didn't want to have his birthday with us cuz his dad and them said he was doing it with them??? Not sure quite what was going through his mind. He did get into it though after a while, and I'm glad Ki kept it small with just us- let's just say it was one of the days I was glad he would be going overnight. ;-) I'll post more, probably for wordless Wednesday.
The Phineas and Ferb pj's are very big but he LOVES them and were the smallest available. He also has a Perry The Platypus pair and so he goes around as Agent P!
We recieved a charm bracelet from Charm Factory to review, and because I've wanted one for FOREVER mom let me have it! I got to pick eight charms; it took a while because there was so much to choose from. They didn't have a whisk charm, which made me sad, but anything else I could have thought of was there.
Main entry: Head on over to Charm Factory and tell me 3 of the 8 charms you will choose if you are the winner. Don't forget to come back here and let us know- it is easy to get lost there, there is a ton to choose from. ;-) 1 main entry per person.
One dinner here- we had to make a turkey, soft bread stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy because hello, no leftovers and that is my fave part.
Ian was a turkey so very happy to hand him off to the other side of his family. *grin*
We've got quite a few reviews and giveaways coming up this week so stay tuned.
Time to set out some of the decorations and watch Miracle on 34th Street- the original, in black and white.
How was your Thanksgiving? Have you started decorating yet? What are your fave holiday movies? Talk to us, we love to get a peek at your lives!
Thanks to TwitterMoms I've been prompted again with a great post idea- 5 activities to do with your kids over the holidays. I love this- and as the girls are older and Ian still young for some of them I'll be telling you the things we have done that are STILL special to our family.
Bake and make candy for gifts- not many people do any more so it really means a lot to the recipients. We also like to bake and put together a gingerbread house. We like to make villages, and so I put together graham cracker houses for the littler ones that they could decorate. Those houses were proudly displayed in our village throughout the season.
Each evening (when we are home) we watch at least one Christmas special together, usually with cocoa and some of the yummy cookies we've been baking.
We get new crayons and coloring books and spend evenings coloring and making snowflakes that we hang up. We spend a lot of our tv watching time doing this.
Set up a card table with a holiday themed puzzle, a big one, and family and friends all take part- a piece here or there in passing or sitting down working together- doesn't matter, the point is everyone pitches in. The goal is to have it done by Christmas eve.
We go out driving around on Christmas eve to look at the lights with the carols playing in the car. Santa comes and makes an extra early pitstop with PJ's, a new movie and some special snacks.
A bonus- yes, I did 5 but this is one of our faves but you can't do it as you (prolly) don't have a Kiki. We decorate the Christmas Kiki. We string her up with garland and lights, stick ornaments on her, laugh like loon-atics and enjoy the heck out of ourselves!
What do you enjoy doing with your kids to celebrate the season?
***To celebrate the premiere of Dora’s Christmas Carol, join Nickelodeon and TwitterMoms as we share our favorite holiday activities we like to do with our kids! The first 30 to enter the contest get a $25 Amex gift card and a Dora Christmas Carol DVD! In addition, 5 more entries will be randomly selected to win a $100 Amex gift card and a Dora Christmas Carol DVD! So get the holiday creative juices flowing for your chance to win!***
- Granny Kat's Pumpkin Roll
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 3 eggs
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
- 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease and flour a 9x13 inch jelly roll pan or cookie sheet.
- In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, and pumpkin pie spice. Stir in pumpkin puree, eggs, and lemon juice. Pour mixture into prepared pan. Spread the mixture evenly.
- Bake at 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) for 15 minutes.
- Lay a damp linen towel on the counter, sprinkle it with confectioner's sugar, and turn the cake onto the towel. Carefully roll the towel up (lengthwise) with the cake in it. Place the cake-in-towel on a cooling rack and let it cool for 20 minutes.
- Make the icing: In a medium bowl, blend cream cheese, butter, vanilla, and sugar with a wooden spoon or electric mixer.
- When the cake has cooled 20 minutes, unroll it and spread icing onto it. Immediately re-roll (not in the towel this time), and wrap it with plastic wrap. Keep the cake refrigerated or freeze it for up to 2 weeks in aluminum foil. Cut the cake in slices just before serving.
Here are your random numbers:
Timestamp: 2009-11-23 03:49:55 UTC
I have your button on my blog.
Nury77 at live dot ca
3.Button on my blog.
Congratulations! I sent out emails but if either of you didn't get it, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
We were off to a great start being greeted with orange frosted cinnamon rolls when we first walked in - the girls loved those.
Being girls natch we needed to freshen up- walking past the checkers everything looked good, they were pretty full with lines but moving along and the restroom was clean and spacious- so far, so good.
As it was a bit before 5 and we knew the event ended at 6 we decided to hit the food first for the samples.
They had a bit of ham left, but no mashed potatoes (not the sweet mashed potatoes as it shows in the ad)- disappointing but things happen.
Moving on to the cheese- now, I always buy fancy cheese as they have great deals and we're kind of snobs about it. ;-) We did buy the most delicious "cheesecake" which was 3 layers, Asiago with pesto, Asiago with roasted red pepper and Parmesan. Really yummy- but we wouldn't have known if we weren't adventurous with cheeses as the only sample available was a chedder. Yep, shocked me too just a plain orange cheddar.
There were other cheese packages out there but the lady serving said when someone (not us, there were quite a few people around the station) asked to try the brie- she's on break and kept putting out cheddar even though there was a generous amount already on the table- more than triple the amount needed for the people milling around.
The brie, btw we also bought as it is under $6 for a pound wheel and you just can't get it cheaper than that. It's not the best brie in creation but for the price it is a fabulous bargain.
The Italian meatballs we were impressed with as we're not usually fans of any storebought meatballs they have that funny taste and these didn't. We did find it a little odd, seeing as they were not plain but Italian that they had a bottle of bbq sauce you could squirt on them- it would have made more sense, imo to have some type of Italian sauce, even Ragu warmed to serve in a little cup if someone wanted to flavor them as I just don't know anyone who would serve them with BBQ.
Even though there were 3 of us, when we got to the cheesecake there was only one little rectangle and the woman serving wasn't doing anything about getting more. Now the girls and I share just about everything but we all would have liked our own pieces. How did she know we weren't just friends? Or well, we do look related but how did she know we didn't mind cooties?
Now this may just be me, but I don't know a single person on the planet who is not lactose intolerant who hasn't had a plain cheesecake. While it was good as far as bought cheesecakes go, I was really surprised that they didn't break out the little samplers that had 4 different varieties- some chocolate! as those, I am sure I would have *had* to purchase on impulse had I been able to taste them.
They had buffalo wings which were VERY spicy, and the server did not warn anyone- and surprisingly they were served with ranch instead of bleu cheese dressing- I know they sell bleu cheese dressing as I buy the big things of it often. Now while this is a good Superbowl food, it just isn't something that I want to serve (or eat) during the holidays.
The really yummy looking appetizers shown in the ad- the brie purses, the southwestern trumpets, the crab cakes, the shrimp- sadly were all safely tucked in the freezers and there were no empty stations where they might have been served and we just missed them. They didn't serve them and had no intention of doing so. Boo! Those are the things I might have picked up if they were really good, to save myself some time and trouble during the busy days ahead- but I absolutely won't buy them to serve without knowing ahead of time if they are company good. ;-)
The sparkling cider was good. The Swiss Miss Cocoa- okay, I mean, we do buy that already but they made it with water so it wasn't near as good as it is when we make it at home. No "good" crackers they had the flips (pretzels on one side cracker the other- okay but had I not already known how good the Keebler crackers are I would not have brought them home to serve with my awesome cheeses.
The spiced apple pork loin was dry- they had overcooked it, so it did not inspire me to pick one up.
The green bean casserole which was not really warm- while it was a green bean casserole, you can't really mess it up- and everyone knows what they are supposed to be so I am not really sure why they had that instead of something different. If I know what something tastes like while I'll grab a sample I won't really be inspired to pick up the stuff- I already make it and so does everyone I know. Had there been something new and tasty- that, I'd have picked up the ingredients for.
No chocolate dream pie or any of those other tasty looking desserts in the pages they have advertising the events. Aside from the plain cheesecake, nothing.
I will say this - of all the workers, from the event servers to those walking around to the checkers, precisely 2 of them smiled or were in any way shape or form friendly. Which does not put shoppers in a better mood.
Especially when by the time we were checking out (shortly after 7, so not at closing) all but 3 of the cash registers had been closed and the lines were long, people were annoyed and we overheard them wondering why they had all shut down early when it was so crowded. We had the most delightful older gentleman behind us who told us stories of his family and travels so we didn't mind the wait, but others, yes, you could see that they weren't happy.
Our store was not particularly clean, aside from the restroom. I know some of that is the idiots who sample then stuff onto shelves between products, and I don't really blame them for that although since I noticed just passing I would think they could have an employee or two making rounds. At least once an employee was in front of us and didn't bother picking up a cup stuffed with napkin right in plain sight. Things like that really bother me and it might not get on your nerves like it does mine.
All in all, the event was a disappointment. Seriously there was very little out that they don't have during the weekends when the sample people are out any other time. No extra stations beyond the one greeting you when you walked in with the orange cinnamon rolls.
There were some great deals, there always are, BUT! we did notice that the movies, specifically UP the blu-ray version was MORE than Kyra paid last week at Wal Mart- now that's just crazy. We had known there was not as good of deals on books and movies as there had been in the past, but to get slapped in the face with the fact that they actually cost more was insane. This is supposed to be a store where you get rock bottom prices- you do everything yourself get no bags, etc- no way in heck should it cost MORE than their own stores.
We did get a good price on a box set of Roald Dahl books (James and the Giant Peach, Matilda, etc) that will make a wonderful gift, and I really enjoyed Paula Deen's book but I am not sure I got that at the best possible price (I'm an impulse buyer or I'd have checked on Amazon). ;-) She has a fascinating story, though and I highly recommend it.
Now, our experience at Sam's in North Little Rock may be a different experience than yours, and generally we really like Sam's. We still got some great deals, and they have a lot of very nice things for the holidays and it is worth going, just don't call it a special event.
Oh and this has nothing to do with my trip, but- PLEASE get those grilled chicken sandwiches back! They are (were) our favorite thing you sell. I didn't say anything when you stopped selling the only pancakes I ever liked years ago, but if you don't say something you don't get something, right?
Did y'all make it to Sam's this weekend? If so you can get extra entries into a giveaway for a $75 Sam's GC from Mommy23Monkeys if you blog about it and link up.
Blessings Abound is giving away a $50 GC to Sam's on 12/8,so head on over.
If you tell me I can't help you out that way, (you will, however, get an extra entry into all of my giveaways for posting) but I'd really love to know my Sam's was just off and the rest of y'all had a fabulous time.
* I told Cat and she is going to tell Sam's about our experience and hopefully it won't happen again. That's the power of the blogger. ;-)
This is a busy week of cooking and baking for us- Ian's 4th Birthday Cake and cupcakes- How To Train Your Dragon, naturally! If you want to see how we did it and if it came out (we're MAKING IT ALL UP OURSELVES) be sure to stop on back we'll share the wonderful or not so wonderful results with you right here on Our Loonyverse. Hopefully it will be a major success but if not maybe we'll have a funny story like we did with our spectacular failure, the Incredible Bouncing Bread.. ;-)
Hehe now that you know our Epic Fail with the bread, what kind of awesome kitchen blunders have you made? Share, please! And as usual, we'd love to know what's cooking at your house- and what if any plans you have for the holiday weekend.
Chicken fried steak, mashed potatoes, cream gravy, peas and or green beans (Does it get any more southern?)
Breakfast for dinner- either poached eggs and Thomas' english muffins or breakfast sandwiches, fruit
Crockpot HM mac and cheese, broccoli or cali blend veggies
Thanksgiving feast- one up at Ken's mom's house including baked and fried turkey, venison and pretty much every side you can imagine- this is a very large extended family dealio where we all contribute- dangerous with a ton of awesome cooks in the family, but somehow we survive it year after year- the main things we will bring up are: deviled eggs, Ian's birthday cake and cupcakes, and pumpkin roll and instead of Kyra's awesome pumpkin cheesecake we are pretty sure this year we will be making Paula Deen's seriously amazing gooey pumpkin cake made with a butter pecan cake mix- OMG was it ever good- after that, whatever else we are inspired to bring.
The second Thanksgiving meal will be Alton Brown's brined turkey that we bake here (we NEED the leftovers and meat for sandwiches and whatnot!) I know other people feel the exact opposite, but after the stuffing it's my fave part. Along with a 20+ lb bird here we'll have stuffing, gravy, mashed potatoes and veggies along with more deviled eggs while we watch the first Christmas movie of the year (for us) Miracle on 34th Street- the original in black and white. After this we are complete and total slugs and good for nothing much but laying around in Turkey induced comas and berating each other for letting each other eat too much.
(Ha, I am better at this than the rest of them but here's my secret for not eating TOOOOOO TOOOOOOOOO much - go straight for the stuffing and gravy with only tiny portions of everything else. ;-) )
Leftovers- I am sure we'll be making our experiment that turned out so well- the Taste of Thanksgiving Rings drowning in perfect gravy- truly the best leftover turkey recipe I've ever tried and not just because we made it up- it really is fabulous! And this wonderful day after thanksgiving will be our first batch of fudge for the year for dessert- btw if you are interested, our fudge is still the easiest to make and still undefeated! ;-)
Something easy, probably use the stock we will make from boiling down the carcass and make turkey veggie noodle or turkey rice soup and serve with crackers or sandwiches.
I know our Canadian friends already celebrated but ours will be this coming Thursday and we've got a lot to be thankful for and look forward to.
We're blessed enough to live near many of Ken's family members, so going up to his mom's to celebrate.
This week along with getting several more reviews and giveaways up we'll be sharing some of our Thanksgiving recipes and traditions as well as celebrating Ian's birthday.
It's easy to be thankful for the big things, and I've been lately hearing/reading a lot of negative Neds and Nellies who say they have nothing to be thankful for but I beg to differ and I am going to list a handful of small blessings, that not everyone can enjoy- things I often take for granted but know not everyone in the world can enjoy- and maybe if someone who feels hopeless and helpless reads this then they can get rid of the "stinkin' thinkin" and realize that while life has its ups and downs for all of us, if we can sit at a computer and read this, we've got a lot good going for us.
I am thankful for:
My family & friends - I know I have the BEST OF THE BEST here but I'm sure most of yours are great too ;)
My brain (unused though it may be - blondie plays the brain sucker game she takes her hand and pretends she's sucking out my brain and it collapses cuz it dies of starvation) ;)
My sense of humor
Access to any information I could ever need or want
Plenty of food
Plenty of the things we need
Coffee!!!! Okay, this should probably go first- I don't think I could function without my coffee.
Movies & TV should I choose to partake
The Paula Deen book I am reading- she has a fascinating story, I'm getting ready to go finish it up now. ;)
Nora Roberts- I can always count on her for a good read
Lots of sweeps and giveaways to enter
The wicked cool awesome sponsors who believe in their products and trust us to get the word out by having us review and/or host giveaways
That I figured out how to do a blog let alone all kinds of techie tricks I never thought I'd be able to do- and all I still have to learn
Candles, especially yummy smelling ones
The potato-cheese-veggie soup I made for dinner... OMG GOOD!
The phone I hate talking on so I can keep in touch with my mama
Headphones so we can all do our own thing
Really bad tv show marathons so the girls and I can bond!
Restaurants for when we just don't want to cook
Good sales and deals
It's pretty clear- there are so very many things to be grateful for, and I have barely scratched the surface.
What are you thankful for?
In a reusable adorable tin sleeve is an assortment of hand-dipped chocolate pretzel rods and molded chocolates, which I can say with some authority are absolutely delicious as we received some of her fabulous creations to sample.
How cute is this? While this would make the perfect gift, I could see Ian putting in his list to Santa- which, holy cow, that boy wants EVERYTHING. Literally. Every time he sees a commercial he says Gigi, I want that so I tell him we'll have to put it on the list for Santa. ;-)
Pretzels and molded chocolates are not all they do- in the sample we were provided to review there were also dipped animal crackers, graham crackers and a really delicious s'more pop.
A passion for decorating with chocolate and sprinkles and attention to detail is what gives them top ratings- I say the delicious taste and the willingness to go above and beyond by making custom orders and a major enthusiasm for what they do don't hurt.
Everything is bagged with care, no assembly line, and in addition to the gifts ready to buy, you can have favors made for your special occasions.
As it says on their etsy shop, they CRAVE special orders! You don't see that too often.
We loved everything we got, although I can't say firsthand how good the animal crackers were as Dev and Ian gobbled them up quick.
Whether you love white, dark or milk chocolate, you won't be disappointed as all are delish!
The prices are extremely reasonable and they are located in Hershey, PA- how fitting is that?
If you are looking for something different and affordable as well as delicious, Rhoda Rose gets very high marks.
THE GIVEAWAY: Winner will get a Santa Suggestion Box from Rhoda Rose filled with delicious white, dark and milk chocolate pretzel rods and molded chocolates. US only 18+ up, ends 12/10 11:59pm CST.
Main entry- without this all others will be deleted: go to the Rhoda Rose Etsy shop and check out what they have- there's a lot to choose from, then come back here and leave a comment telling me something else you like. Subsequent daily entries can be as simple as today's entry.
Want more? The main entry is all you need for a chance to win, but you can find out how to get additional entries into our giveaways here.
For the first time ever, I like a base brownie recipe better than my own. I know how conceited that sounds but when you have been making something for years, you know exactly how to tailor it to your specific tastes.
I was impressed from the get go- everything from the emails to the packaging had me thinking- this company is something special.
The more I read, the more I found to like.
You can read their story- from how they got started to where they are now here- it is impressive. A long time friendship, a family recipe and a passion for brownies along with a commitment to excellence and they are up to over 2.5 million brownies annually.
Their little mascot and spreader of joy is Brownie, a cheerful fairy of Celtic lore who delights in doing good deeds.
Fairytale Brownies are all natural, certified kosher and free of trans fats, hydrogenated oils, preservatives and artificial colors.
Fairytale Brownies gives back- because it all started on a playground, Fairtyale Brownies supports KaBOOM!, a national non-profit organization that empowers communities to build playgrounds. They donate brownies and a portion of their profits- you can help too- at checkout you can choose to donate a dollar by clicking give the gift of play at checkout.
We received the Christmas Dozen to review, and it was one of those gifts that is a delight to unwrap- you know the presents that you just know something special is inside because of the care that went into presentation- that's what you get with your package from Fairytale Brownies.
It started with a decorated tissue-paper layer closed with an enjoy sticker.
After that was a cheerful Christmas gift band surrounding their classic box. Which makes a wonderful crown.
Inside, though, is where the magic happens.
A dozen tempting 3" by 3" brownies, each in a different flavor.
We started with the white chocolate and didn't stop til we were almost sick from eating so much! Yes, they were that good.
12 delicious flavors including caramel, chocolate chip, cream cheese, espresso nib, mint chocolate, original, peanut butter, pecan, raspberry swirl, toffee crunch, walnut and the aforementioned white chocolate.
Each was truly a delectable treat and all were excellent- a I've always said, quality ingredients and a passion for what you are doing makes all the difference.
Our personal favorites- espresso nib, toffee crunch, white chocolate and the caramel. There is not a bite of any of them left, and we didn't share with the dogs if that tells you anything- they got pepperoni so they were okay with it. ;-)
*From Geeky Mommy- please if you ever create a pumpkin or eggnog brownie, I want to be a taste tester.
As much as I wish I could toss in my brownie-making apron, I just can't justify ordering every time I get a brownie craving, however, I absolutely will be ordering them. They are very reasonably priced, and make an extremely impressive gift. In addition to the 3" x 3" Fairytale Brownies we received they have Fairytale Sprites 3" x 1.5" and Fairytale Magic Morsels 1.5" x 1.5".
You can shop by price and there are several options that would make fabulous teachers gifts or for those faraway loved ones. Your mail carrier- especially if you keep them hopping like I do with wins and such. Hostess gifts- I have been to many functions where it would have been perfectly acceptable and more than polite to bring a gift and if you bring Fairytale Brownies the host/hostess could choose to plate them up then or save them later to hog by themselves - yes, I'd probably do that. ;-)
There are several packaging options, including some with hot chocolate and *hint hint people who are buying me gifts, coffee* as well as truffles and... no, I won't tell you everything they have because I want you to go to the site to see all there is and tell me your fave for your main entry. Try not to drool on your keyboard.
That's right- Fairytale Brownies has generously offered one of our readers a chance to win the Christmas Dozen. I have to say we're wishing we could enter our own giveaway, they are so so so good!.
Can't wait? Use the code MOMBLOG at checkout for free shipping on orders of $30 or more. And add the new Candy Cane Truffles for your lovely Loonyverse hostesses. ;-) They look divine. Like everything else on the site.
THE GIVEAWAY- 1 winner will win their very own Christmas Dozen, a $37.90 value. US only 18+ up ends 12/15 at 11:59 pm CST. Daily entry.
Main entry- without this all others will be deleted. Go to Fairtyale Brownies and tell me what you would love to give or receive. There is a LOT to choose from, make sure you have your Christmas list in mind when you are looking and don't forget you can get free shipping with the code MOMBLOG on orders over $30. I know a lot of you don't know what to get for teachers and the mail carriers, delivery guys, really, I don't know anyone who wouldn't love this. They even have sugar free options. Your entry on subsequent days can be as simple as today's entry.
You can have two extra entries (1 each) by following Fairytale Brownies on Twitter and / or becoming their Facebook Fan. Just leave your user name in the comments.
Really want to win? Yeah, I would too. The main entry is all you need for a chance to win, but you can find out how to get additional entries into our giveaways here.
Good luck, everyone!
We are thrilled to be taking part in the Macy's Believe campaign.
Building on the success of last years efforts, this year Macy's is adding to it with their "Believe" campaign.
There will be a national Santa tour, a "Yes, Virginia" animated special based on the famous New York Sun's 1897 editorial, and there will be a "Believe" letter writing station in Macy's across the country. Each letter received is $1 to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, up to 1 million dollars. That's a lot of wishes granted- go Macy's!
I personally know a recipient of a wish so I can tell you firsthand the good work that they do and that they took care of everything not only for the child but for the family to make sure it was a magical, special time. I commend Macy's for choosing a program that lifts the burden, at least for a little while, so the stress and strain and medical procedures can be forgotten for those brief magical moments that the wish is being granted.
You can find Macy's on Facebook and on Twitter.
If you are as big a fan as I am, you'll be delighted to know that Macy's has gotten Queen Latifah for their commercial called "The Trek". She'll be helping a little girl mail her letter to Santa.
Anyways, I will use their words as it is basic info and I see no reason to re-invent the wheel at this point. Here's what Macy's has lined up for us:
Anyhow, about twice a month on Sundays it s..l..o..w..s down so badly - worse than dial up ever thought about being so I'm going to have to get those posts up tomorrow.
When it takes more than 30 minutes and it is still circling instead of uploading a picture, it's time to give it up for the night.
Ha, and this is the best I can do. Is it any wonder I wish we could move?
I know I've been a little lax in the postings (but WOOT still making at least one a day for NaBloPoMo) and though I'm feeling some better my head is still a little swimmy.
I'm going to get some help tomorrow and get some more reviews and giveaways up for y'all- I would do one now, but I really don't think I could give the care and attention they deserve- we really appreciate all of our sponsors and want to give them our best, not throw together a half-assed post just to get it done. In addition to doing our post we also get them listed on OLS, Prizey and other sites to get exposure for our sponsors and give as many people as possible a chance to win. Hopefully everyone understands why we're not throwing up posts, in the meantime don't forget to enter the giveaways we do have up.
One of the Little Rock malls had breakfast with Santa today- umm, no, don't think I want a 3 year old with very little perception of time pestering for 6 weeks asking when Christmas is coming. Needless to say, we passed and would have even if everyone was feeling 100%.
Speaking of 3, Ian's birthday is the 24th, he's getting so big. He wants Thomas (of course) and Zhu Zhu pets- will NOT be fighting to get one of those. Hopefully we can run across some but if not he'll get it later and still be happy.
He's a riot he says I want that gigi I want that (you know, every ad between Phineas and Ferb, doesn't matter what it is. I say- we'll put it on the list for Santa. Seriously he says he wants so much that I said you want everything and now when he says he wants something we say what do you want now Ian and he says I want everything! Hahaha he wants Tinkerbell wings lolol some members of the not this side of the family have a real problem with it- like they did when Dev painted his toenails purple or something- like we're turning him gay or something. *rolls eyes* Oh he wanted the Dora backpack and his Nana told him he needed the boy one and he started to pitch a fit (we met up in Target to do the switch off) so I just said we'll put that on Santa's list- now, Asialea has backpack (if you know the backpack, backpack song you know what I mean- imagine listening to it relentlessly) and it is the most annoying damn thing on the planet otherwise I'd get it for him just cuz that's how I roll. ;-)
Okay, I got my post in so crash time.
We received our choice of 3 keyrings to review and we chose 3 very diverse ones so that we could give you a good evaluation of what they have to offer.
First we chose a digital photo keychain green because Ian is fascinated with pictures, especially of himself and this keeps him happy when we shop. ;-)
How cute is that? Have to say- LOVE IT! and the price- $14.99 can't be beat, even at the discount stores.
Next up- the Nintendo DS Carrying Case in white. At $6.99 it is an exceptional bargain. The verdict- Gamer Girlie says definitely an accessory gamers should have- she can't be unplugged (well wireless, but she MUST be hooked into some sort of device) and she gets bored with the same game and they are so small it is easy to misplace them or lose them in the bottom of a purse or backpack.
Now she can carry 4 extras, hook it right to her DS and as an added bonus it comes with an extra stylus, which if you use them you know how easy they are to misplace. You wouldn't want this as your main stylus, but it is really nice to have on hand. She says the bottom is soft and it is a really nice thing to have.
The final keychain we got to review was the Barrel of Monkeys Game Keyring. Okay, this is just too fun. You'd think kids and you would be wrong. Well, right in that the kids want to play it, wrong in that the teens and adults won't give them a chance.
This is just as addictive as the game ever was and small enough to carry everywhere so you never have to be bored again. Geeky Mommy has this on her keychain and pulls it out on break at work, while out with friends, in a restaurant waiting for her food, whenever she has a few minutes to wait and everyone has to comment on it and wants to try it out and asks where she got it. We've given several people the url already because they want them for themselves as well as to get for very affordable stocking stuffers. At $6.99 you really get so much more than your moneys worth in entertainment value.
That is but a small sampling of what they have to offer- everything from digital to flashdrives to Disney to games and toys and more. Seriously you need to check them out.
Ready to order? Use the code myloonvyerse for a 10% discount- these are awesome stocking stuffers.
Now onto the giveaway. WholesaleKeychain has generously offered to give 3 of our fabulous readers the keychain of their choice. Whether you want pics of the kids or hearts or an Etch-a-Sketch or Candyland, Nascar or NFL Wholesale Keychain has you covered.
For the main entry, go to WholesaleKeychain and pick out your favorite keyring then come back here and let me know what it is.
For additional entries, see here.
Giveaway open to US residents only 18+ and ends 11/30 at 11:59 pm CST.
We have a couple of winners to announce.
The winners of the Hall's Refresh samples & t-shirts are
Random Integer Generator
Here are your random numbers:
Timestamp: 2009-11-13 16:42:19 UTC
Following your blog (Charlene)
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Timestamp: 2009-11-15 22:58:18 UTC
Here are your random numbers:
Timestamp: 2009-11-15 23:00:20 UTC
The winner of the Yoplait Fiber One gift pack is
Random Integer Generator
Here are your random numbers:
Timestamp: 2009-11-13 16:37:30 UTC
I just tweeted this post.
Congratulations Swtlilchick and Grampy, I will be emailing you shortly for your address so I can get your info to our sponsors.
Thanks again! I have several more to post, but we have been battling the flu so I am a little slow, I'll be getting some up later today and over the weekend if possible.
Target and TwitterMoms are asking "What three favorite family Thanksgiving traditions have you passed or will pass on to your children?" Just for sharing on your blog you have a chance to win one of 15 Target GC's.
Since we used to move a lot, some of our traditions have changed over the year but the ones that we keep are the ones that bring us closer together with our family, friends and loved ones.
We put the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade on and catch it as we can while cooking and getting ready.
We live near Ken's family, so we go up to his moms now, whereas we used to host. One of the things she does that we always did was invite those who had no other place to go or who just wanted to be a part of the family gathering. Everyone is welcome.
Another thing we do is NOT leave all the work up to one person- everyone or at least each branch of the family has certain things that they bring. Two things that we always bring are deviled eggs and pumpkin roll. Everyone has their specialties though several of us try at least one new dish each year.
When we come back home we declare it the start of the Christmas season and break out the Christmas tunes and listen while we get a turkey and stuffing going here (we didn't the first year we went to gram's and it was AWFUL not having leftovers) then we settle down to watch the original Miracle on 34th Street in black and white.
It is also officially time to start with the decorating. We pull the boxes out and check the lights at least, sometimes we'll actually get to the trees, sometimes not, depending on if I have to have my trigger finger ready at midnight est for the Black Friday deals online. ;-)
My girls are older now, so it is easy for me to say these are the things that mean the most to them as they are the ones that we all continue.
What traditions do you have or want to start? I'm always looking for new ideas.
So, we got our coupons in for the Free Smucker's Uncrustables I posted about a while back. Ki got one, and I did. Our store had only 12 packs of pb&j on white, strawberry and grape and they honored the coupons.
Dev is a pb&j connoisseur and has deemed them an unqualified success. Not only does she like them, she takes two for lunch and they have been fought over. Major deals have been struck and fingers have been smacked back.
It's funny, we got them thinking they would be a nice treat for Ian now and then when we get busy (and he's very lucky she doesn't like strawberry jelly or he wouldn't have had any).
So, seriously, I probably can't get them all the time but when I can find coupons and sales (or maybe Sam's has them, really, I just thought it was no big deal slapping pb&j together so didn't even think about getting them before) we'll be stocking up on them.
The pb&j queen LOVES THEM and has asked for them tomorrow for the third day in a row. She first said she was ready for a change when I asked what she wanted for lunch then said no, no we want the Uncrustables. Who knew?
So, if anyone knows who is in charge there is a whole new group to market the Uncrustables to since it's not just Dev and a small group it is all of them they think it majorly cool.
I know that Ian likes them but hasn't gone out of his way to ask for them whereas Dev and her friends have and I will keep buy them again, stocking up on sale, as I'm sure many of the others' parents will as well.
P.S. If they want a test group, Dev and her friends are more than happy to be taste testers, reviewers and/or spokespeeps.
Smucker's Uncrustables - an unqualified hit.
Luckily, I got a reminder that the deadline is coming up and I just have time to get this out to you so you don't miss out on a chance to try it for yourself.
The divas and Ian got to do the taste testing- and they tasted it in smoothies and they couldn't detect any noticeable difference in taste or texture (we're funny about texture around here). Even Ian liked it fine.
It comes in a variety of flavors including Vanilla, Strawberry, Key Lime and Peach.
For 50 calories and extra fiber, it makes a tasty treat- great for anyone watching their calories.
If you want to try it in a smoothie here's one way we like to make ours- Per serving- 1 carton vanilla Yoplait Fiber One yogurt, 1 handful ice, 1 handful frozen berries and if you like to live dangerously add a shot of lime juice (I do that with jello too, mix one of the berry flavors and lime, they blend nicely and really complement each other.)
If you would like to try Yoplait Fiber One for yourself you can print a $1 off coupon here. If you'd like to win the prize pack I won including a free product coupon for a 4 pack of Yoplait Fiber One, a divided dish, insulated bag and more (pictured above) leave me a comment telling me your favorite snack.
That's it, you're entered. Really want to win? You can find out how to get extra entries here.
Ends 11/12 at 11:59pm CST. US only 18+
I need to post for NaBloPoMo so it's going to be totally random.
We've been making a really good broccoli slaw/salad dealio with golden raisins and whatnot- our new salad of the month I guess. I've never really had one before like this. Sort of like carrot raisin salad with broccoli, carrots, red cabbage and the raisins and I think we talked about putting sunflower seeds in it next time.
Ki and Dev took Ian to see Where the Wild Things Are- he wasn't scared and it wasn't bad but that's about what they had to say for it- other than it was disjointed. Oh, and Ian is definitely Ki's Little Max. ;-)
Speaking of the holy terror- he's so cute every time I get up from the computer he rushes to my chair and gets someone to spin him. Ken, especially gets him going really fast and he's like a drunken sailor when he gets off, it's hysterical. And really cute because he counts the spins but then when he gets dizzy enough goes "oh, yeah, now that's what I'm talking about" it's adorable.
He also has taken to running to my bed and climbing under the bottom (fitted) sheet and *hiding* from gigi. And taking the pillows and blankets bringing them out to the trampoline and making a puppy nest. Yesterday he was telling Groucho all about how you make a puppy nest- the bottom blanket is Thomas, then gigi's blue blanky then the white one and so on. (Sometimes he and Grouch fall asleep in there, it's to cute.)
He loves all the dogs but when he comes back from being with the other side of his family he always rushes to dude and says you're my best friend.
Oh and he's singing- theme songs! Thomas and Bob the Builder mostly.
Ken was home sick over the weekend and Ian wasn't here and Ken was like you know you watch entirely too many kids shows when "There's 104 days of summer vacation" from Phineas and Ferb stuck in your head. He and Ian (having that testosterone gene and all) fight for control of the remote- Ian usually wins. ;-)
That's enough for now I should totally try to get some sleep.
xoxoxoxoxoxo love y'all.
As you may or may not know, some of the freaks I live with don't eat condiments- I know, right? I can't imagine it either.
It can make finding things we all like challenging to say the least.
I came up with this recipe to give the ribs enough flavor that the weirdo's enjoy it plain, but not so overwhelming that the rest of us can't slather on the sauce.
Season family pack of country style boneless pork ribs liberally with salt, pepper, rosemary and garlic and place in slow cooker.
Add 1/2 cup apple cider.
Cook on high 4-6 or low 8-10 hours.
These are really excellent as is served with bbq sauce on the side for those that like it, but the rest of us like best then to slather with Sweet Baby Ray's award winning BBQ sauce (when we're taking the easy way and not making homemade) and cooking for another hour on low.
Really delicious, and everyone is happy. (If we cook longer, we just take about half out and they either reheat if we're all on separate schedules or keep in the oven on warm covered with foil so they don't dry out if we're all eating together.)
If you have leftovers they make awesome pulled pork sandwiches.
Devii and I are both on task- she with NaNoWriMo and me with NaBloPoMo. So, yay, us.
Ken and Dawn are both sick- only two down that's pretty good for around here.
We have found some really awesome sponsors so look for some pretty fabulous giveaways coming up- hopefully we can help you with your holiday shopping.
We are working with companies that have things that we use, have on our wish lists, good prices etc. We hope you'll be as thrilled as we are with what we're finding.
Of course if any sponsors or pr reps are reading this and would like to be featured, we are open to all pitches and if we're a good fit, we'd love to work with you.
Thank you again, everyone who takes the time to read our blog, whether you comment and email or not, you are appreciated. We are very thankful for each and every one of you.
Oh, I am trying to figure out the whole label thing for the top to make it easier for y'all to navigate, in the meantime if you are looking for something in particular in the right sidebar there is a label cloud of the most clicked topics.
Have a fabulous, fabulous rest of the weekend.
ETA: I'm thrilled to announce that this giveaway was chosen as a Prizey Pick! Yay! You can see the listing here.
I found the cutest etsy shop when I was looking for things to feature for our Holiday Celebration (BTW Kyra is drooling over this, guys, and the others will be as well. I am pretty sure Santa is going to bring her one, but shhhhhhh don't tell.)
How cute is this? I know, I know, you want it and I want you to have it. In fact the owner, Robin, was kind enough to let me pick out my favorite necklace to give away to one of our lucky readers.
Not only that, but right now if you go to Robin's Jewelry Box Facebook page and become a fan you can enter to win $25 of Dessert Jewelry (ends 11/30).
There are some seriously cute, amazingly affordable pieces and I know that you'll find something- probably many things- to fall in love with as we have.
So, the deets- we're going to keep this one easy- head on over to Robin's Etsy shop and let me know your fave item (not shown here) and you're in.
One entry per person, ends 12/6 at 11:59 pm CST.
Okay guys, we put good old Random.org to work and here's our winner-
Random Integer GeneratorHere are your random numbers:
17Timestamp: 2009-12-08 03:27:28 UTC
Since we already bought several of the Thermoses we decided to give both away. The thermoses are great, they have a built in spoon in the lid that Dev says is "wicked cool" and when she brings one to lunch her friends all think it's pretty neat as well.
The older girls take them to work.
Two winners will each receive 1 thermos, 1 branded childs' spoon and 1 coupon for a 4 pack of Horizon Little Blends. Ends 11/19 @ 11:59 pm CST. US and Canada only 18+
Main entry- tell me what you might pack in your Thermos. (This MUST be done for any additional entries to count.)
For additional entries, see here.
So, apparently our dishwasher is worried about cleaning up the town, and won't tolerate dirty ho's.
Since we first got it instead of saying WASHING- HOLD it has said WASHING HO. So, no dirty skanky ho's around here, our dishwasher is washing them up one HO at a time!
If you're playing along with Wordless or Mostly Wordless Wednesday, leave your link, please, so we can stop by.