Thursday, December 13, 2012

RSVP for #CookiesKids

Monday, May 2, 2011

Enter to win one of two $500 Walmart Gift Cards

Want to Win $500? Tell 5 Minutes for Mom YOUR Creepy or Funny Bug Story  #RaidBugStory

Prize: $500 Walmart Gift Card (2 winners)

Where: 5 Minutes For Mom
When: Ends May 3rd
Enter here!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Giveaway at The Coupon Geek: Win a Wii Game Console

Jaycie at The Coupon Geek is giving away a Wii Game Console!  If your family is like ours and a step behind in the game situation, this is your chance to win one.

Prize:  Wii Game Console
Where: The Coupon Geek

When:  Ends April 29. 2011 

Enter here!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Remembering Easter with Coca-Cola and Vintage Ham Recipe

 Do you have special memories that you associate with Coke?  I always think of the polar bears that Coke used in their advertising for years.  Remember those?  They were so funny - and cute - and cool!

Another one of my special memories is associated with a Coca-Cola product that has been discontinued called, Tab.  Do you remember Tab?  I'm dating myself here, but I was in high school when Tab was popular and we would drink it for lunch.  Just seeing the logo takes me back to my old high school cafeteria, sitting at lunch with my friends, drinking tab.  I went to an all-girls high school and we had to wear hideous uniforms.  Make-up was discouraged and hair styles were pretty low maintenance/non-existent.  Still, there were good memories of the friendships formed by the adversity - we all had a common enemy in the nuns.  Later in life, I became good friends with a nun, and she is truly one of the best people I have ever known.  I'm still convinced that she is an oddity in her ranks, however, and probably the only nice one *only kidding* *sort of*.  Enough of my scars *wink*, I do have a talent for over-dramatization.

Have you ever cooked with a Coca-Cola product?  I tried this recipe, just to see if it was an urban legend.  After extensive testing (oops, over dramatizing again!), I conclude that the carbonation and ingredients in Coke, really do improve the taste of ham.  Would you like to try for yourself?  Easter, the "ham holiday" is coming up!  Perfect timing to experiment with lots of company coming over and your Martha-perfection, er reputation on the line.  Hehehe.  I promise this one won't be a disaster.  Really, I promise!

Coca-Cola Ham


1 On-the-bone Fully Cooked Butt-Portion Ham
1 can of Coca-Cola
1 cup of brown sugar
1 can of Pineapple Rings
1 jar of Maraschino Cherries

Line a shallow baking pan with aluminum foil.  Slice the ham into pieces about three inches by three inches (approximately) and layer them in the pan.  Sprinkle the brown sugar, lay pineapple rings on top.  Put one cherry inside each pineapple ring.  Pour Coca-Cola over the top.  Cover with aluminum foil.

Bake at 450 degrees for three hours.

Serve with mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, green bean casserole, and seven-layer salad for an Easter feast!

By doing things with an unusual twist, ie adding Coke to a recipe, you create a special memory that your family will remember for years (hopefully with a smile).  This is how traditions are made!

About Coca-Cola®
Created in Atlanta, Georgia, by Dr. John S. Pemberton, Coca-Cola was first offered as a fountain beverage by mixing Coca-Cola syrup with carbonated water. Coca-Cola was introduced in 1886, patented in 1887, registered as a trademark in 1893 and by 1895 it was being sold in every state and territory in the United States. In 1899, The Coca-Cola Company began franchised bottling operations in the United States.

More info:

Join Coca-Cola® on Facebook:

Join Coca-Cola® on Twitter:

Disclosure:  I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Coca-Cola® blogging program. If I am one of the first 100 blogs received by SocialsMoms, I will receive a $25 gift card. For more information on the program, click here."

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Sharing What Makes Me Feel Lucky

The only thing better than $1 a night movies?  Free movies!  Lucky you, redbox is giving everyone the chance to score free movie credits now through St. Patrick’s Day during the redbox Lucky to Have Friends Like You promotion. Each fan receives a unique web address. Every time someone rents from your address through March 17, you get a free movie credit. Rental credits are valid for ten (10) days after they’ve been deposited into your account. Spread the word, and lucky you could be rolling in free movies this March.  To learn more, click here
SocialMoms and Redbox offered me a gift to blog about what makes me feel lucky!

What makes you feel lucky?  For me, there are the big serious things and those honestly make me feel more blessed than lucky.  But then there are the little things that make me just feel lucky!  It's a little bit silly and a lot bit fun but these are the things that make me feel lucky.  I'll write about five little things and then five big things.

1.  The number one thing is when I hit a string of green lights.

I warned you it was silly!  But it does!  When I hit a string of green lights in a row, I just feel good.  I think, "wow, that was lucky!".

2.  Winning...... anything!

Sometimes I can win the littlest thing - sometimes something I don't even particularly want - and it makes me feel lucky!

3.  Avoiding disaster.

Sometimes you have a close-call, avoiding a traffic accident, or you start to knock over a large cup of hot coffee on some important papers and just in the nick of time - you brake, or you catch the cup.    Whew, how lucky!

4.  Finding something I thought was lost.

Sometimes I'll misplace an earring or a book, any little thing.  Then just when I think it's gone forever, it turns up.  I feel so lucky!

5.  Being in the right place at the right time.

To win something, or have an opportunity to do something special, you need to just be in the right place at the right time.  Once we were having dinner and a film crew came in and recorded a special about the restaurant.  We were in quite a bit of the footage and later even strangers would come up to us and mention seeing us!  It was fun and lucky.

Okay, now the big things!

1.  My faith. 

About eight years ago, a few things came together that led me to a personal relationship with God.  Major change in my life and it's made my life richer and better in every possible way.

2.  My daughter. 

WOW, she is the joy and biggest blessing of my life.  I am grateful everyday for the gift that this child is.  I tell her she's a precious treasure and only wish there were more words to describe how lucky and blessed I feel to be her mom.

3.  My parents. 

I have the best, best, best mom in the world.  She is there for me every time I need her and lots of times I don't know I need her, but I do!

4.  My husband. 

I would never be where I am today without my husband.  We are often at opposite ends of the opinion scale, but we end up in the middle, exactly where we belong.

5.  Nature. 

There is so much beauty in this world and I love seeing all the different aspects of nature.  So many different and amazing creations.

So what makes you feel lucky?  Do you say lucky or blessed?  Do you like the feeling of being lucky?

Disclosure:  I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and redbox blogging program, for a $25 Walmart gift card from redbox. For more information on how you can participate, click here

Monday, March 7, 2011

Ten Tips for Getting Away with Great Family Travel Deals

We love to travel and to maximize our travel dollar, we look for ways to still enjoy our trip but to do it as frugally as possible.  These are our top ten tips for getting away - and getting a great travel deal!

1.  Research, research, research

Whether you are looking for an airline ticket, hotel, or attraction ticket, research to find the best price.  There are tons of travel deal sites to help you.  Some of my favorites are:
2.  Travel off-season
You can save huge dollars and avoid crowds when you travel off-season.  We were able to go to Ireland and Paris, for the same amount just one peak-season trip would have cost.  Yes, we did have to pack our rain gear - but it was worth it!
3.  Use coupons
Travel coupons?  You bet!  There are online coupons, Entertainment Book coupons, discount codes and more available for travel.  Before you go, do a google search and see what turns up.  You might be surprised!
4.  Take your own food
If it's at all possible, take your own breakfast.  Eating out can be crazy-expensive and especially for breakfast, you can have great savings if you take your own.  The other thing we like to take when we go on vacation is our own snacks and soft drinks.  Those are other items that have inflated prices when you are "on-the-road".  In addition to saving money, you will also save time if you don't have to wait in line for a snack.  For a toddler, you may also be saving a meltdown when you can provide a fast, delicious snack.
5.  Share meals
When you do eat out, share a meal.  Portion sizes are often huge and you can't take home leftovers when you are traveling.  Share a meal! You'll save money and waste.
6.  Avoid buying souvenirs
How many times have you gotten home with a specialty item that you bought on vacation and said, "What was I thinking?"  Often we get carried away with shopping on vacation and forget what it will look like in our home setting.  Look for free souvenirs - if it's permitted, take home seashells, pine cones, etc.
7.  Give the kids "coupons" for treats and gifts.
If you're children seem to want every item, in every store, in every town, give them "coupons" before you leave home.  An example might be, "This coupon is good towards the purchase of one T-Shirt."  Children still get to shop and choose their own purchases, but they will have limits.  When the coupon's gone, so is the shopping.
8.  Set expectations before you leave
Discuss the budget with all family members before you leave home and get carried away with vacation euphoria.  Make sure everyone knows that while you want to have fun and enjoy what your vacation spot has to offer, that doesn't mean that you will or have to do everything.  Hopefully you will be returning to this place and have another opportunity to try the offerings.
9.  Look for free or reasonable activities at your vacation spot
Before you leave home, google your vacation area and search for opportunities for bargains.  For example, the local children's museum or zoo might have a bargain or free day.  You can schedule your trip to that attraction on that day and save a bunch!
10.  Consider a driving vacation to a smaller town during a festival 
While visiting a small town might not be appealing to your family, check to see if they have a local festival or event.  Going during that time will offer opportunities for attractions and events that won't be there at other times and add the excitement that you need.

A big component to saving money while vacationing, in addition to awareness, is planning.  It's important to plan your vacation well and early.  You can save money on so many things if you take the time to research, make reservations early, and get creative.  Enjoy!

Disclosure:  I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Alamo blogging program, for a gift card worth $25. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

About Alamo
Founded in 1974, Alamo Rent A Car is a value-oriented, internationally recognized brand serving the rental needs of airport leisure travelers. Alamo offers low rental rates and a hassle-free customer experience at the most popular travel destinations throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, Latin America and Asia. In addition, Alamo customers in the U.S. are able to conveniently choose their own vehicles, based upon their advance reservation and requested car class, and then simply drive away from the airport.

The Alamo membership club, Alamo Insiders, offers its members numerous perks including exclusive, member-only deals, quick and simple reservations, and frequent traveler miles with each rental.

Become an Alamo Insider

Monday, February 28, 2011

Top Ten Things My Daughter Would Miss If I Were Abducted to Mars!

In honor of the release of the movie,  "Mars Needs Moms", Social Moms asked me to write about what my daughter would miss if I were abducted to Mars! Starring Seth Green as 9 year old Milo, the movie shows kids everywhere that they need their moms more than think they might *smile*. 

The team behind "Disney's A Christmas Carol" and Maya's favorite - "Polar Express", produced this new movie, "Mars Needs Moms", in Disney Digital 3D and IMAX 3D.

So without further ado, here are the top ten things, I think my daughter, Maya, would miss if I suddenly disappeared and found myself on Mars.  (which she tells me would never happen because people can't live on Mars, my little "know-it-all".)

#10  Dreaming

We talk about our dreams, her future, things we want to do and see all the time.  I hope I am a catalyst, inspiring her dream and make wishes.  If I were abducted to Mars, she wouldn't be as inspired to dream. 

#9  Swimming

In the winter, I take my daughter to swimming class and she is a little "fish" - loves to swim.  In the summer, I swim with her in our pool - it's something we love to do together.  We play, we enjoy being outside, we get great exercise.  Swimming and being out in the sunshine is a joy - for both of us.

#8  Cooking Together

We love to cook together, breakfast, baking - anything really.  It's an activity that allows for talking as you do it, and we are both talkers *big smile*.  Sometimes we make a pretty big mess, but it can be just as fun to clean up.  Especially when she was younger, but still today, she loves to play in the water - washing dishes is a treat.  And of course there is always, "licking the bowl!"

#7 Camping

We love to travel and camping is one of the ways we love to spend a vacation.  My daughter would surely miss camping with me.  Roasting marshmallows, making smores, learning trail signs, hiking, swimming.... fun!
#6  Shopping

We are great shoppers and love to go shopping for clothes for my daughter.  She would definitely miss shopping with me.  It's not what we buy that matters, it's the process.  It's sharing our opinions of what is beauty.  We will shop for anything and everything, mostly sharing time together.

#5  Girl's Adventure Days

We have Girl's Adventure Days, usually with my mom too, and go on adventures - sometimes out to lunch, shopping, visiting a children's museum or other attraction.  Occasionally a movie.  So fun!  We usually end up learning something and always end up laughing - a lot!

#4  Reading books together

I love to read, and I hope to pass that down to my daughter.  We love to read books together, sometimes, when we reach a part that she knows by heart, I just start the sentence and she finishes it.  One of her favorites is Moo Ba La, La, La.  It rhymes which makes it easier to remember - we've had that one memorized for a long time.

#3 Listening to Lullabies at Bed Time

Every night we listen to Carne Wilson's CD A Mother's Wish Lullaby CD and we both just love it.  She would miss that.

#2  Hugs

A hug from my daughter is one of the things I treasure most in the world.  I just told her this morning, that I should have a sticker on my bottom that says, "I stop for hugs."  'Cause I do, of course!  I know she would miss my hugs.

 #1 Giggling

Maya and I often find ourselves giggling together.  Sometimes for no special reason, we just look at each other and the joy of life giggles up.  It's one of my favorite things and I know it's the number one thing I would miss!

As much as I would love to try space travel, if I had to go without my family, I would definitely go kicking and screaming, because this list is also the top ten things I would miss most!!

I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms blogging program, for a gift card worth $25. For more information on how you can participate, click here.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Nicole's Nickels - Schwan's $25 GC

Prize: Schwan's $25 GC
Where: Nicole's Nickels
When: February 7, 2011
Enter here!

Reviewer's Retreat Twitter Party

What:  Reviewer’s Retreat Twitter party
Why:  Chatting about review blogging issues and giving away conference themed prizes and fun swag from their sponsors.
When: Wednesday, February 9, 2011 from 9:00-10:00 p.m. EST
Where: Twitter hashtag #RR11
How: Follow @coolbabykid, @BridgetteLA and @DoubleDutyDivas
Prizes: One Night Stay at Great Wolf Resort, Poconos-PA; About One One Year Subscription; $25 Carolina Pad Gift Card; Macy’s First Impression Gift Sets; Pedia-Lax Fiber Gummies; At Last Naturals Wild Yam Cream; SoftLips Lip Balm and more!
Sponsors: @GreatWolfLodge, @Pampers, @AboutOne, Musslemans
Click here to RSVP and read more.

Our Ordinary Life - Alice in Wonderland

Prize: Disney's Alice in Wonderland 60th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray + DVD
Where: Our Ordinary Live
When: February 3, 2011
Enter here!