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Sunday, May 30, 2010

Memorial Day

I'm supposed to finishing up a business plan right now.  But I got writer's block and decided to check my emails.  Someone sent me the link to the video included in this post.  It touched my heart.  Because I know people who  have served in the military and who have fought during wartime. 

My maternal grandfather and my maternal step-grandfather both fought in WWII.  Apparently it caused an intense amount of stress and pain for my maternal grandfatherSo much so that he locked himself in a room for an entire year due to depression.  We now know his kind of suffering better as post-traumatic stress disorder.  My grandmother left him several years later.  I have never met the man.  I only hear a few stories.  I also hear he has a huge scrapbook of sorts that chronicles his experiences during the war.  I hope one day I get to see it.  I'm still deciding if I want to see him.  His "issues" left a big scar on the rest of his family, including my mother, who was one of the recipients of his anger and depression.

My step-grandfather is actually quite the opposite. He's a pretty positive person, no matter what's going on around him.  He came through the situation pretty much emotionally intact and moved on with his life.    He met and married my grandmother at the VA where they both worked and he never really talked about his experiences in combat, but every once in awhile he would get out his albums and go through them with us.  Then Saving Private Ryan came out.  I asked him if he was going to see it.  He stated simply, "I already lived it.  One tour through Hell was enough for me."  That was the first time he had hinted that it might have been difficult for him.  Then he was asked to write some of his story for a reporter.  He talked about the day they landed on Omaha Beach and some of the horrific things he saw and endured.  And that was it.  He's never really talked about it again. 

So it's Memorial Day weekend and I think of these two men.  And I think of others like them who became soldiers.  Some of them are old now.  Some of them are young and still trying to make a life for themselves.  All of them made sacrifices for their country that either changed their lives forever or took their lives from them.  And there is nothing I can say that would pay them back adequately for their efforts.  So I will simply thank those who lost their lives in the line of duty, along with their families, for making the ultimate sacrifice.  My family will try to ensure that your life was not given in vain as we struggle to hold on to our precious freedoms and heritage. 

And I will also take the time to thank the living who have served and who are still serving their fellow citizens as VOLUNTEERS in our military.  People like you are the reason our country is great.  Thank you for your valor and courage.  You are loved and appreciated. 

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

FUNundrum Circus Ticket Giveaway!!

This is the last giveaway celebrating my 2 year blogoversary!  Woot woot!  How much fun have I had over the last 2 years with my blog?  More fun than a person should be allowed to have.  It has really been a life changing experience.  I have met so many cool people and I have come to know myself and my family on a much deeper level.  AND...I have had the privelege of working with some great companies to offer some really great stuff to my readers!  I feel very blessed to work with such great sponsors.  

On that note, let's give away the last prize of the month - Ringling Brothers Barnum Bailey FUNundrum Tickets!!!!  This is gonna be a quick giveaway because the tickets ore for the evening of June 23rd, so we need to give everyone time to coordinate.  Also, this giveaway is LOCAL, for Phoenix residents only.  Sorry to all my non-local readers!  

WANNA WIN IT?!  Win 4 tickets to FUNundrum on June 23rd!  Check out the Ringling Brothers Barnum Bailey website, click on Meet the Stars and leave a comment telling me which performer (s) you think will be most interesting.  Contest will end at 12 midnight PST on June 1st!!.  LOCAL PHOENIX residents only.  

If you want extra entries, help me advertise the contest!  You can:

  • Tweet this contest

  • Post it on your Facebook Page

  • Put it on a Mr. Linky somewhere on the internet

  • Email your friends and family!  
And don't forget,  if you don't win you can still get a family 4-pack of 4 tickets for only $44 through ticketmaster.com- good to all performances (excludes Circus Celebrity, Front Row and VIP seats). I KNOW! Sweet deal, right? You can purchase additional tickets for $11 each.  Just use code MOM online or over the phone to get your discount.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Light up Cars/BioGaia Giveaway Winners!

I have a little Giveaway Housekeeping to do today, so let's get this show on the road!  Starting with the BioGai Probiotics giveaway...

Congrats to Miss Hope for her win, I hope this helps!!!


Now on to the Marble Cars!!
Congrats to the Watsons on their win, I hope the boys enjoy the cars!  They really are cool at night with all the lights turned off! 

Thanks to everyone who left comments and thanks to the sponsors (BioGaia, Skullduggery and MomSelect)  for offering such great product giveaways! 

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Silk Pure Almond Review and Giveaway

When I was asked if I wanted to participate in a product review for Silk Pure Almond Milk, I accepted because, truth be told, I was kind of intrigued by the fact that they (the almond milk makers) could even make milk from almonds. I am always amazed by the fact that there are people in the world who think about stuff like this and then actually find a way to make a product from their ideas.  And it actually sounds like it might be kind of healthy.  So...milk from almonds.  Weird?  Or freaking tasty.  I decided to take the plunge and find out.

I decided to try both the original and the Vanilla flavored Silk Pure Almond Milk products.  I used the vanilla flavored milk first, both on my cereal and in a smoothie.  I will NOT use it on my cereal again, it was way too sweet and it had kind of a weird syrupy viscosity to it that I found unpleasant to look at while I ate.  I know...I told you before...I have weird texture issues when it comes to food.  HOWEVER...the Vanilla Almond milk rocked out loud when I added it to my fruit smoothies!  Seriously killer and a much healthier alternative to regular milk.  The vanilla flavor and sweetness took my lackluster smoothie to a whole new level and I felt really hip and sexy while drinking it because I knew that I was putting good, healthy, nutritious stuff into my body.  Almond Milk is chock full of natural antioxidants, and as much calcium and vitamin D as dairy milk, with absolutely no cholesterol, saturated fat, dairy or soy. Best of all, a serving of Silk Pure Almond Vanilla almondmilk is only 90 calories.  I KNOW!  What a great addition to my healthy eating regimen, right? 

The Silk Pure Almond Original Milk worked better for me on my cereal.  While it does have a little different taste than regualr milk, I found the nutty kick it added to my cereal to be enjoyable.  My kids didn't even know it was almond milk when I poured it over their corn flakes, other than they found just a hint of sweetness that meant they weren't complaining about not adding a spoonful of sugar to their cereal.  Yay for healthy alternatives!   The viscosity is a little different than whole milk, it is actually closer to skim or 1%  milk, but I got over that quickly once I dug into the cereal, because the taste of Silk Pure Almond Milk is actually very creamy/silky. Hence the name I guess, huh?   

Overall, I was pleasantly surprised by Silk Pure Almond Milk.  I will definitely add it to my grocery list.  Honestly, it won't completely replace my regular milk, but I will incorporate it as a healthy alternative for things like smoothies and cereal and soups, etc.  And it is a great soy free alternative to dairy for people who are soy and lactose intolerant.

Wanna learn more about Pure Silk Almond Milk?  Check out their website.  Click here for a .75 cent coupon toward your Pure Silk Almond purchase. 

Wanna Win It?  Come back here and leave a comment telling me something you learned about Pure Silk Almond Milk and you will win a half gallon of Silk Pure Almond milk plus a cute little Chico BagContest will end on June 5th, 2010 at 12 Midnight PST.  Open to US residents only.

As usual, you can always win extra entries by: 
  • Posting about the giveaway on Facebook or your blog
  • Tweeting the contest
  • Posting it to a Mr. Linky somewhere on the web

**Disclosure:  I did not receive monetary compensation for this review.  I did receive 2 coupons for Silk Pure Almond Milk from Silk in order to try the product and facilitate this review.     

Sunday, May 16, 2010

BioGaia Probiotics Giveaway!!

Yes, that's right people!  Yet another giveaway!  I told you May would be a good month to stop by to help me celebrate my Blogoversary, did I not?!  Yes, I did.  Right here

And I also told you about what a great product BioGaia probiotics is.  I talked about it here.  My son, Little Man, has been constantly ill over the last 5 months or so and we only just found out a few weeks ago that he has had mono the entire time.  Needless to say, his entire immune system is compromised.  In addition to being tired, he has also suffered with lots of digestive issues, which is normal for him, but they have been made worse by the antibiotics he was being prescribed for the rash and strep-like symptoms that turned out to be mono (I'll talk about the whole lack of proper diagnosis thing later...That will be a long post!)   We are ever so grateful for the BioGaia products we received, he has been on a steady regimen of the drops and straws for over a month now and we have seen a huge improvement with his "gut" issues. 

Wanna Win It?? BioGaia and MomCentral are offering a set of probiotic tablets or straws to one of you, my wonderful readers!  Just leave a comment telling me which BioGaia product you would like to try - the straws or the tablets?  But the contest is going to be a quick one, so make sure you don't delay your entry too long, as this giveaway will end at 12 midnight PST on March 22nd.  US Residents only please! 

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Light Up Marble Racer Review and Giveaway

Hot Wheels has some wicked new competition these days.  They're called Light Up Marble Racers.  Yes...the name is a lot longer than it's counterpart, but the coolness factor more than makes up for the lengthy moniker.  (I know - I just used the word moniker.  I feel like a real writer now!)  

We got ours in the mail the other day and the boys went CUHRAAAZZZYYY!!   Seriously.  It was like Christmas in July.  Or May I guess.  Anyway...it was way cool.  So of course we tore right into them and here is what we found:

Things we love about Light Up Marble Racers:
  1. They light up.
  2. They have cool decal labels so kids can customize them.
  3. They light up.
  4. They go fast.
  5. They light up.
  6. Blackie Chan the Ninja Cat does NOT like them.

With 6 different models to choose from, every kid should find a favorite. 

And more good news!!  Right now CVS is running a Buy One Get One Free special on all six models in Arizona, California and Nevada! To take advantage of this great offer:

Mail or email a copy of your CVS receipt with your Light Up Marble Racer purchase to the following address:

Skullduggery
5433 E La Palma Ave
Anaheim, CA 92807

Include the following information:
  • Your name and address (No PO Boxes).
  • The name of the Light Up Marble Racer you would like sent to you for free (Fire, Police, Confetti, Cat's Eye, Volcano or Cyclone).
This offer expires May 21, 2010 and Sales slips must have a date of May 21, 2010 or earlier. This offer is limited to CVS purchases in ARIZONA, CALIFORNIA & NEVADA only. Offer limited to the first 1000 entries so hurry and get yours!! 

WANNA WIN IT??  One lucky reader can win a Light Up Marble Car 6 Car Collector's Set!  Yep...a whole set!!!  Check out the Skullduggery website and leave me a comment telling me which car you like best and to whom you would give it!  Do it by May 23rd AT 12 p.m. PST, because that's when this contest officially ends.  The winner will be chosen by random.org.

To get extra entries you can do any of the following: 
  • Tweet the contest,
  • post it on your Facebook page,
  • blog about my givaway or
  • post my giveaway on a Mr. Linky somewhere
Good Luck!  Ima go scare my cat with some Light Up Racers.

***Disclosure:  Thanks to Mom Select and Skullduggery for providing me with free cars to test drive to facilitate this review.  I did not receive any other compensation for this post. 

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Summertime Activity Conundrum? Try Ringling Bros. Funundrum!

When it starts getting hot here, we start looking hard for cool things to do during summer months.  Lucky for  us the circus will be back in town again this June!  Last year was the first time my kids had ever been to a circus and they had a flippin' blast!  I had a flippin' blast!  If you have never been to a circus, you have to go.  Click here to read about what we saw last year.  This year Ringling Bros Barnum Bailey Circus has a new show on the road called FUNundrum!!

The show celebrates the 200th anniversary of the birth of the legendary P.T. Barnum, the Greatest Showman on Earth!  It features "130 performers from six continents, almost 100,000 pounds of performing pachyderms, cowboys, pirates, and mermaids, Barnum’s FUNundrum! is a super-sized spectacle so massive you just can’t miss it!"

The good news?  Tickets go on sale today, May 8th at 10:00 a.m. at ticketmaster.com.  I know!  And you know what else?  You can get a family 4-pack of 4 tickets for only $44 - good to all performances (Excludes Circus Celebrity, Front Row and VIP seats).  I KNOW!  Sweet deal, right? You can purchase additional tickets for $11 each.  Just be sure to purchase early, because tickets go fast.  Just use code MOM online or over the phone to get your discount.  

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

I Write Like I Talk

So a lot of people at work are freaking out about the length of some of my posts.  Which surprises me.  Because they sit with me all night while we do mundane stuff and conversate, so they should have figured out by now that I like to talk.  A LOT.  And when I write?  I write like I talk.  Which is A LOT!  Ya'll know me enough by now to know that I am a communicator!  It's what I do!  With lots of words and facial expressions and hand gestures!  So when I write?  I try to incorporate all of those things, which means I have to use lots and lots of words to get some of those feelings and motions and ideas across.  THAT is why my posts are sometimes so long.  That and the fact that I tend to be pretty self-indulgent when it comes to my blog posts.  'Cause this is where I get stuff off my chest or brag about my kids or just chat and catch up with my bloggy friends.  So I can say and write what I want.  Obviously, I feel like I have a lot to say/write.  Which is why I have a blog in the first place.  Oh yeah...that and to write about my boys, which I haven't done for awhile, but will be doing again very soon. 

So how's this post for long and drawn out without saying much?!  Pretty damn amazing how I can do that, huh?!  I know. It's a gift. 

Seriously you guys...why are we even having this conversation?! 

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Happy Blogoversary to Me!!


It's that time again, people!!  2 years ago this month I started this blog. (yeah...disregard the 1 on the cupcakes...I jacked the picture from somewhere on the internet and didn't take the time to change the number to 2, so for you you detail-oriented people, don't get all hung up on the number - focus on the message.  The message!)  It has been an amazing experience and I continue to be shocked, amazed and grateful for the friends I have made and the experiences I have because of this online journal.  It's really weird when you stop to think about it.  I mean, it's just a diary of sorts.  How can something so insignificant bring about such changes in my life?  Well...I could go on and on about the hows and whys of the whole thing, and you all know I will, because that's what I do.  I go on and on and on about my thoughts and feelings, my experiences, my growth...usually in great detail.  But I'll spare you the lengthy, self-indulgent post for now and I'll just thank you for taking the time to stay in touch with me as I write about my growing pains and life with my boys. 

And to thank you all for your love and support, I will be finishing out the month with lots of giveaways!!  YAY!!  Free stuff!!!  So ya gotta check in over the next few weeks to see what's on the giveaway list and leave a few comments to win a prize.  Okay?  Cool.  Now go do something totally fun this weekend to celebrate my blogoversary while I sleep off the last few weeks of 12 hour work days and this sucky work schedule of mine!  Somebody eat a giant piece of chocolate cake for me while you're at it.   

LikeWear Giveaway Winner!!

Let's do this!!

Random.org declares the winner as........






























The winner is Rae's World!!!  Congrats, Rachel, look for an email with details about claiming your gift cert!!