Monday, January 26, 2015

#Giveaway Win One of 3 Uniden Lullaboo Video Baby Monitors

As a parent, when we find out that we are expecting a new baby, a million and one things go through our minds. Like making sure we have all of the items needed in place, from the clothes, diapers and baby gear, to making plans for their futures. We make plans, like starting a trust fund for our kids, saving up for their college, and deciding on whether or not we will use placenta and cord blood banking.

All of these decisions are not ones that can necessarily be made over night, or even by the end of the week. The ones that have long term effects are ones to think over, and make a decision on based on the facts and benefits. From where you will set up your child's college fund at to get started with, to who you will bank with when it comes to the cord blood and placenta banking, as a parent or even grandparent, the decisions are ones to be thought through so you make the right ones.

When it comes to the cord blood and placenta banking, there are a lot of things to look into, which includes educating yourself and others on the many benefits you and your child can get from cord blood banking. This is something that should be gone over before the baby gets here, in the months leading up to the birth, so once you make your decision, everything is in place and ready once the baby arrives.

One place to turn to, where you can not only find the information you are in search of when making the decision to placenta and or cord blood bank, but also use as your bank, is Life Blood Bank. On the Life Blood Bank site, you can find information on both Placenta and Cord Blood Banking, and also find out how to sign up, so when baby gets here, you are ready and have a bank in place!

Well aside from the benefits and information you can find by simply visiting the Life Blood Bank site, right now, you can head on over to the LifeBankUSA Facebook, where you can enter to win one of 3 Uniden Lullaboo Video Baby Monitors! You can enter by go to this link:

Gift card received, thank you to Life Blood Bank as well as the PR for supplying me with a product for this review, all opinions are my own.
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Saturday, January 24, 2015

#Giveaway Setting up for the Big Game with LTD Commodities ($50 Gift Code)

Like many, we are making those game day preparations. Getting the jersey's out so we can root for our teams, looking up recipes for snacks to cook and serve up at our Super Bowl party, and searching for all of those products that will help bring our party together! To help with these preparations this year, we were given a chance to shop the line of NFL products over at LTD Commodities.

We found a great selection of game day products available. From the apparel to the table top items, they have a great selection of NFL products, from one site online, and all at amazing prices! For our game day preparations, we found the Chicken Wing Football Serveware to use and help bring that fun football look to our table for our guests!
While the game is on and during half time, to keep everyone entertained, we can head out front for a friendly game of football with our friends and the kids! We can do this by using one of the NFL Stadium Collection Footballs, giving us a item that is not only great to use as a decor item during the game, but also one that allows us to show our team spirit and have fun with our friends while we do!
Then when it comes to other decor items to put up around the house, we can find some great signs that have our team on the signs, and are personalized with the Personalized Framed Sports Pub Print! Making the items you can find at LTD Commodities for this year Super Bowl, the items needed so you can pull off a Super Bowl Party to remember! And to help with those parties this year, the wonderful people from LTD Commodities would like to give one of my amazing readers a $50 gift code to use online!

Gift code received, thank you to LTD Commodities as well as the PR for supplying me with a product for this review, all opinions are my own.
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Friday, January 23, 2015

Celebrate National Children's Dental Health Month with Xlear

February is just around the corner, and with that comes National Children's Dental Health Month! This year the theme is, "Defeat Monster Mouth", and to help with defeating monster mouth in my home, we were sent some great children's products from Xlear!

With the products from Xlear, which include the snack options like the SparX Candy and dental care products like the Tooth Gel, we can help keep our kids mouths healthy. I like that when we choose to give our kids the SparX Candy, they can get a sweet, but sugar-free candy that is made with Xylitol, helping to keep bacteria from sticking to their teeth and from forming plaque. Then with the Xylitol Tooth Gel, we can clean their teeth, with a safe to swallow, all natural, Fluoride-Free line of tooth gels, in all, helping our kids defeat monster mouth!

So with February peering out just around the corner, help celebrate National Children's Dental Health Month, and "Defeat Monster Mouth", with the products from Xlear.

Product received, thank you to Xlear as well as the PR for supplying me with a product for this review, all opinions are my own.
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HARVESTLAND® Chicken Chili Soup

When it comes to feeding my family, I like to find products that are both filling and good for them, so when I shop for items like chicken, pork, and turkey, I look for the products that specify that they are farm raised. I go for the farm raised poultry and pork because, like many parents, I want to serve or cook with chicken or turkey, not with any of the hormones or antibiotics that they are given. I want the meats to be fresh, and the animals that we get the meat from to come from farms where they not caged, and where they are fed foods that are meant for them, not animal bi-products. So when I was given the chance to review some of the meats from the HARVESTLAND® line, I was excited, since it is a brand of meats that we already use in my home!

With the HARVESTLAND® products, we have found that the menu options are enldess, like using the ground turkey meat on our taco nights, or by having some seasoned chicken tenderloins, turkey burgers and more. There are a variety of products that we can buy at our local grocer, giving us options and also giving us a variety of meats to cook and serve for my family that offer the farm raised foods.

Well with the colder weather upon us, we enjoy making fresh hot soups and chili in my house, so for my review, I decided to use some of the HARVESTLAND® Chicken Breasts in a Slow Cooker Chicken Chili Soup!

Ingredients for Slow Cooker Chicken Chili Soup:

1 Slow Cooker
1 Pack of the HARVESTLAND® Fresh Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
1 can sweet corn (drained)
1 can black beans (drained)
1 can pinto beans (drained)
1 can kidney beans (drained)
3 tomatoes (diced)
1 can chicken broth
cilantro (finely chopped)
1 can green chili enchilada sauce
1 packet of taco seasoning

For the topping (optional)
corn tortilla chips
cheese and sour cream

Pour and mix all ingredients in your slow cooker. Let cook on low for 6-7 hours. Once the chicken is done, take it out and shred it, then stir it back into the soup mix. Let cook on low for 1 hour, then serve. Once you have the soup in the bowl, you can add the cheese, chips and sour cream on the top. I also used canned goods, chips, and cheese from our local natural grocer and they were all marked organic, this is also optional.

You can find the various Harvestland products at a store near you, to find where it is sold near you, head to the site and go to the store locator!

Also be sure to follow them on Twitter @Harvestland
and on their Facebook Page

I received this product for free from the sponsor of the Moms MeetSM program, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a MomsMeetsSMblogger, I agree to use this product and post my  opinion on my blog. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of May Media Group LLC or the manufacturer of  this product.
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Thursday, January 22, 2015

Naming Day and More: Birth Ceremonies for Interfaith Families

Marriage should be a joyous celebration of the combination of two individuals into a cohesive family unit. When those two individuals commit their lives to one another, they are also bringing together their two families. However, interfaith families often face a number a hurdles in selecting a ceremony that suits both sides. As if a wedding ceremony wasn't difficult enough, couples often face a secondary hurdle when a child is born into that interfaith family. Which religion will take center stage? Which religion will dictate that birth ceremony for the child? What about naming?
In this piece, couples in interfaith relationships can read about options for birth ceremonies that will satisfy both sides or offer a neutral solution that does not offend either side. Before you select a christening outfit for your child from a source such as, read these tips to select the perfect ceremony for your family.
Please Both Faiths at Once

The first option you have as parents is to select an interfaith ceremony that is not directly linked to one religion or the other, but integrates facets of each religion. In a post on the On Being Both website, parents learn about the process one interfaith community uses to welcome children of interfaith couples. Religious leaders from both religions (in this case Judaism and Christianity) develop a ceremony that includes a Bris as well as a Baptism.
Use One Ceremony at Birth and Another Later in Life

Interfaith Family points out that Jewish families can circumvent conservative and orthodox movements within the Jewish faith in a birth ceremony. Traditional Jewish teachings state that a child is not Jewish unless he or she has a Jewish mother. However, that does not mean the child could not become a member of the faith. Mohels will perform circumcisions for little boys with the understanding that immersion in a ritual bath occurs later to introduce the child to the faith.
Other mohels, usually from progressive movements within the faith, will perform a brit milah without an expectation of later rituals or steps toward conversion. In either event, interfaith parents can satisfy the desires of one side of the family in the short term, while leaving the door open to full conversion at a later point in life.
Chart Your Own Path

A unique option that is new to many congregations and families is to have the parents write a letter to the child. Rather than following any traditional naming ceremony, the parents write the child a letter about the name they have chosen. In it, the parents explain where the name came from using stories, memories, and (when applicable) qualities of a person that served as the source for a name. The parents read the story aloud to their family during the child's naming ceremony and give it to the child later in life at a Bat or Bar Mitzvah, or other important life event.
With the proper mixture of faith and creativity, you can select a birth ceremony that respects both faiths and pleases both families, while paying homage to the unique circumstances of your expanding interfaith family.

Steven Volz has three children and is a family counselor. He enjoys learning about the different family ceremonies throughout the world. Look for his enlightening articles on various websites and blogs today.

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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Emotional Attachments: Busting the Many Myths of Bonding with Newborns

It is emotionally vital for babies to form a strong attachment bond with their main caregiver, but there are many myths surrounding emotional cues and attachments. Here's the truth behind some of the common rumors, along with advice that might help you bond with your new baby.

Why is attachment so important?

John Bowlby's pioneering work on how infants attach to their caregivers shows that when a baby's needs are met, the baby is more likely to feel cared for and understood, growing up into a happy, confident child. In contrast, babies and young children who have insecure attachments to their caregivers learn the lesson that they cannot expect their needs to be met and may experience difficulties relating to others in life.

Is love enough?

Many parents think that as long as they love their children, a secure attachment bond will necessarily form. However, your baby responds more to your behavior than your emotions in early life, so love alone is not enough. You need to look for your baby's cues, respond to their needs and keep your own stress under control (as babies are observing your cues while you observe theirs). This can sound like a tall order, especially for mothers suffering from the baby blues, but you may be surprised by how quickly you learn how to read your baby's signals. Look at their facial expressions, remember the noises they make when they are hungry or tired, and keep track of types of touch and movement that seem to soothe the baby.

Do you have to pick up on all of your cues?

It's natural to worry that you might not understand every single one of your baby's cues and that you might therefore facilitate the development of an insecure attachment. Thankfully, you can maintain a strong and loving bond with your child be responding to the majority of their signals and by always attempting to repair any disconnect that you notice. Being a perfect parent is not required. Just be responsive, attentive and willing to self-monitor.

How can parents calm themselves in stressful times?

Since stress responses are a key part of secure attachment bonds, it's vital for parents to spend time taking care of themselves in order to manage their negative emotions. For example, make sure you regularly get some time off to rest or pursue your other endeavours, as constantly working to care for your baby can result in a short temper. It can also be meaningful to spend time away from your baby choosing new clothes or toys, or visiting an ornament shop where you can pick up treasured mementos. The trick is to know when you need a break and to take measures to ensure you get that break. If you feel upset or angry while caring for your baby, try to take slow, deep breaths and get your mood on an even keel before you actively interact with the child.

Amanda Meeks is a stay at home mom and avid writer. She enjoys covering a variety of topics to post on the web. You can read her interesting articles on many websites and blogs.
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Friday, January 16, 2015

#Giveaway Valentines Gifts from See's Candies ($15 in Gift Cards)

Valentines Day is not too far off, and like many, I not only enjoy giving those I love and care about cards and gifts, but I do also enjoy getting them as well. I think one gift that can never really go wrong in my opinion, for me, is chocolate. I adore chocolate, in fact it is my weakness, and like many I look forward to receiving chocolate for Valentines Day. One line of chocolates that we enjoy in our house and share over Valentines Day is See's Candies.

I find that being able to not only find a variety of chocolates, especially the dark chocolates, as well as the candies they have from See's Candies, makes them a go to line when I look for chocolates and candies to give or even get for myself. I also like, that I can not only find a great variety to choose from, but when it comes to those boxes of chocolates, I can personalize them, by choosing the chocolates I will put in the mix. Making the experience of shopping the See's Candies line a more personal one for both the giver and receiver!

So as you get ready for Valentines Day this year, be sure to check out your local See's Candies or shop the candies from their online store!

To help when it comes to the Valentines Day gifts this year, the wonderful people from See's Candies would like to give one of my amazing readers 3 $5 gift cards!

Product received, thank you to See's Candies as well as the PR for supplying me with a product for this review, all opinions are my own.
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Thursday, January 15, 2015

#Giveaway $25 Gift Card to TGI Fridays

When it comes to our date nights, my husband and I enjoy going out for dinner and a movie. For me, being someone who is always looking for a deal, even when it comes to our date nights, I seek out those dinner deals, where we can save, get our fill, and enjoy our time out. Well, between now and January 25th, when you head out to TGI Fridays, you can dine and drink for just $10!!

Oh, and that is not all when it comes to this amazing promo! There are also options, so when my husband and I head out, I can choose from some of the lighter courses and drinks, where as my husband can go for the meal and drink that he looks for when we go out. Making the $10 Dine and Drink deal at TGI Fridays, a must to take advantage of now, since it is only available for a limited time. To help out with your next date night, the wonderful people from TGI Fridays would like to give one of my amazing readers a $25 gift card!

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3 Family Friendly Activities for Winter

The weather has been brutally cold for the past few weeks for most of the country. So, what do you do when you’re stuck inside either because of the snow or because of the frigid forecast? Here are a few family-friendly activities to keep everyone entertained inside.

Movie Night

What better way to bond than over a movie. Choose a family-favorite and gather all the necessary snacks and beverages to make it feel like a real movie adventure. You can stock up on a variety of movie candy, popcorn and beverage options, this way everyone in the family gets what they want. Set the movie time for early evening, turn down the lights, make sure all phones are silenced or put away and start the movie. This will help ensure that there are no disruptions and create optimal family time together.

After the movie, you can chat about your favorite parts and either snack on some more candy or even make ice-cream sundaes. Your kids will enjoy the sweets and you’ll get a few hours of undistracted time together.

Arts & Crafts

Make it a family night to create a scrapbook or collage of your latest vacation, or seek out some old photos and make a family history scrapbook. All you’ll need for this project is: photos, glue sticks or double sided tape, photo album, colored paper, and scissors. You can pick up different stickers, or accessories to decorate each page or keep it simple. Make sure you have colored markers, or pens to help write captions on each photo, so that you remember what each picture is in the future.
This is a great activity to do with the family because you can teach your kids about your family history, share fun childhood stories and reminisce about your favorite family vacations.

Give Back

Since the weather may not be optimal to go out and help build a house, or clean up a local park, there are still some family activities that you can coordinate together on to bring some joy to another person. One great way to gather as a family is to create care packages to send overseas to the men and women serving in the military.

It’s simple; you can pick up supplies such as socks, magazines, non-perishable snacks, books, and toilet paper to send abroad. Make it even more personal by crafting up personalized cards to say Thank You! It’s fun to organize all of the supplies and write a note of gratitude. You can partner with different organizations to get a list of recommended supplies and find out where to send the box to. Every little thank you helps brighten their day. Giving back as a family brings you closer and your efforts are greatly appreciated.

There you have it! Just because the weather outside isn’t great for family fun in the sun, doesn’t mean you can’t bring the fun inside.

Vicky is an independent writer for Dollar Tree offers great deals on office supplies, party supplies and more.

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Protecting Your Health In 2015: What You Can Do NOW To Help In The Long Run

As with the old saying goes, health is wealth. These days, more and more people are growing concerned over their health. Becoming a healthy person enables you to do and achieve more. Even if you have a tight schedule, you must always find the time to protect yourself from various health risks that you might encounter in the future. Staying healthy is easy if you make it a part of your daily habit. With that in mind, here are a few ways on how you can start being healthy so that you can be stronger in the future.

Good food habits

Eating the right kind of food not only gives you enough energy to go through the day, it also brings about a positive change in the way you look. The daily recommended calorie intake for working adults is 2000 calories. Try and keep your food intake well within the daily limit. Avoiding junk foods and processed food items can help lessen the health risks that you might face in the future. One way to know the contents of what you’re eating is by simply preparing your own meals. Cooking your own food is not only cheap, it also tastes good.

Exercise regularly

A proper diet is simply not enough to regulate your body. Exercising is also important in staying fit. You don’t have to exercise every day, you can simply allot 30 minutes of your time to go the gym and work out. If you think that gym memberships are expensive, you can simply pop in an exercise DVD or go jogging. Running a few times a week offers heart benefits that you can relish for the future. Physical activity can also come in the form of simple tasks such as walking to the office or taking the stairs instead of the elevator. Keep active and keep healthy.

Flex your brain muscles

You can avoid Alzheimer’s and other brain-related diseases by simply flexing your brain muscles on a regular basis. Keeping a healthy body means that you have to keep a healthy mind as well. Try not to stress yourself and learn how to relax and unwind if things are getting too intense. Engage yourself in social activities to help maintain healthy connections in the brain. Some mentally stimulating activities such as crossword puzzles promises the possibility of creating new nerve cells that’s important in keeping your memory fresh and active.

Quality sleep

If you find yourself tired throughout the day, you probably aren’t getting enough sleep. Adults need a maximum of eight hours of rest to remain active throughout the day. Sleeping properly can help reduce the risk for depression and memory loss. You can also accomplish tasks effectively if you rest properly. Getting the right rest allows you to have a productive day and a happier outlook in whatever you do.

Get checked

It is important to know the current condition of your body so you can get insights on how you can maintain or improve your health for the future. Go to your respective doctors and get checked on various aspects of your body. Checking your blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and getting screened for diabetes can reduce heart disease that you might encounter in the future. Knowing your blood work through Sclerotherapy in NYC ensures that you get proper blood circulation.

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Do You Have The Right Work/Life Balance?

Maintaining the fine balance between work and your life is crucial to lead a healthy life. Even if you’re working hard to bring about a steady flow of cash, you should always reserve some time for yourself to enjoy the good things that can be bought with what you’re earning. How do you keep the right work/life balance? Here are a few ways that can help you accomplish that.

Understanding boundaries

When you are given extra tasks at work, it’s always fine to say no. Even though embracing more responsibilities at work can work wonders to help you get that promotion, you should always consider your own health and well-being. It’s best to set-up boundaries at work so you can enjoy more out of life. Learn to identify where work ends and life begins to help you get a better balance between the two. Knowing your limits can help you maintain a healthy balance between work and life.

Allot time for yourself

If you’re getting too caught up with work, cut back on the amount of things that you do and learn how to appreciate yourself. Allotting time for yourself and your loved ones not only improves your mental state, it also gives you more time to enjoy the simple pleasures of life. Take a quick vacation at a nearby destination over the weekend and just kick back on a hammock near the beach. Having time for yourself, whether you’re getting a massage or treating yourself for an entire day, allows you to know yourself better and those who are around you.

Keep the passion alive

You might find yourself getting bored with the work that you do, so it is important to keep the flame alive. To maintain a strong passion for your work, you can always find new ways on how to do the tasks that you have at hand. Try and use your personal strengths with how you do things around in the office. For example, if you’re going to prepare a presentation, use different forms of media to express what you have in mind. Find that spark in your work life to keep the passion alive.

Work hard, Party harder

Finding the right place where you can kick back and enjoy being yourself can bring an increase to productivity. Grab yourself a drink and converse with your friends. You don’t have to party like you used to back in college, all you have to do is to become a more sociable being. You can also meet and socialize with others when you go to parties that are related to your industry.

Continue to learn

Find a more productive way to spend time with yourself. Learning not only helps you become a better person, it also gives you new and exciting ways on how you can do better in your job. Keep yourself busy with learning activities that you can enjoy on your spare time. There are a number of sites online that can help you maintain PMP and PDUs that you can use to improve your skills and talents. You can even get online training for free on some websites!

Gear up for the future and enjoy a proper work/life balance to keep your mind and body healthy. Always remember to make time for yourself and your loved ones and keep the stress from work out of the door.

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Wednesday, January 14, 2015

#Giveaway Making Realistic Resolutions with Gorton's

The new year is upon us, and like many, I am trying to keep up with those resolutions of loosing weight and eating healthier. I find that one way to keep the resolutions of eating on the lighter side through out the week is by making those menus and shopping lists for the week ahead of time. To help when it comes to my menu, I was sent a pack of goodies from Gorton's along with coupons to purchase some of the Gorton's Grilled and Gorton's Baked products.

There are many dishes that I can create using the products, including a taco dish for our Taco Tuesday's! Now most might think that having tacos is a no no when it comes to the diets, but by using the low calorie corn tortillas and the Gorton's Grilled Tilapia, along with fresh toppings, I can enjoy tacos, even on a diet.

To make the tacos that are both a low calorie dish, as well as very flavorful, you are going to want to purchase some low calorie, low carb, corn tortillas, lime, jalapenos, cilantro, tomatoes, cabbage, olive oil, and some of the Gorton's Grilled Tilapia.

I first set the oven for the Gorton's Grilled Tilapia. While the oven was heating up, I chopped up the cilantro, jalapeno, tomato, cabbage, squeezed some lime on the top, then mixed it together and put the mixture to the side. Once the oven was ready, I put the tilapia in the oven. I then put a pan on the top of the stove over some heat then added some olive oil to the pan. After a couple of minutes of the oil being on the heat, I put my corn tortillas in the oil using tongs to hold up the sides to make the curve of the shell, allowing the oil to heat the tortilla on the sides for just a few seconds as I turned it. When the shells were done, I put them on paper towels to help draw away any additional oil.

When the tilapia was finished, I took it out and cut it up, then added it to the taco shells, and added the topping mixture! I did not need any additional sauces or seasonings, allowing me to enjoy Taco Tuesday with my family while staying within my daily calorie count.

I have been enjoying being able to add the products from the Gorton's line of fish products when it comes to making my realistic resolutions and sticking with them, and you can too, because the wonderful people from Gorton's would like to give one of my amazing readers a great gift pack! Also challenge yourself, and sign up so you can participate in the 30-day Realistic Resolution Challenge over at or by using the SparkPeople App, which can be found on iTunes Store or on Google Play!

This pack will include the following:

  • Two (2) full-value product coupons
  • An insulated tote bag
  • The SparkPeople Cookbook
  • The Spark book
  • The SparkPeople 28 Day Boot Camp Workout DVD
  • Gorton's Blogger Giveaway

    Product received, thank you to Gorton's as well as the PR for supplying me with a product for this review, all opinions are my own.
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    Tuesday, January 13, 2015

    Why You Should Already Be Planning Your Holiday For 2015

    The new year has just begun, but you should already be planning for your 2015 holiday. Why, you ask? If you are a seasoned traveler during the holidays, you might already know the answer. But for those who are not used to going on vacation holidays, there are things that you need to know in order to achieve the holiday that you want this year. Here are some of the reasons why you should already be planning your 2015 holidays.

    Plan your holiday
    You don’t just hop on a plane or go on a cruise when you want. Taking a vacation during the holiday season takes careful planning and scheduling. You wouldn’t want to learn that your flight or hotel is fully booked at the last minute. To fully enjoy your holiday experience and make it hassle-free for you and your family, planning ahead should be one of the things that you should do.

    Bargain travel
    The earlier you plan for your vacation, the cheaper you will spend on your holidays. Planning early gives you the time to browse for bargains and deals that you wouldn’t get if you cram your holiday planning. It takes a bit of research to find the best holiday deals and that’s just what you should do months before your vacation holiday is scheduled. This also gives you the freedom to choose your flight time and schedule, as you will most likely get the option that you want as opposed to waiting for the last minute to book a flight.

    Save for your holiday
    When you go on a vacation during the holidays, you want to make the most out of the place that you are planning to visit. Planning in advance allows you to research the places that you want to visit and the sights that you want to see. Of course, holidays can be expensive. If you already have a goal early on, you will get to save the money that you need in order to get the experience that you want out of your vacation.

    Schedule your vacation
    If you are travelling with family and friends, planning your holidays in advance is a good idea, as you need to know if everyone will be able to join you for your trip. Different people have different schedules and responsibilities. You want to know early on if your schedule can fit your vacation. This is crucial, especially if you are going to have holiday family reunions in a far location.

    Eliminate stress
    Planning a vacation can be stressful. You have to think of purchasing tickets, scheduling your vacation, booking a hotel, and the activities that you want to do with your family. If you plan in advance, you can eliminate the stress and ensure that you have an enjoyable holiday that everyone will remember for years to come.

    Now that you know the advantages of planning your holiday in advance, it’s time to plan your vacation! Browse through several holiday destinations and don’t forget to pack your holiday dresses!

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    New Year, New Garden: 5 Easy Ways To Renovate Your Outdoor Space

    Your home is where you spend most of your time. You cook dishes in the kitchen, relax in your bedroom, and spend time with your family in the living room. But what about the outdoor space? If you love entertaining guests outdoors, one of the things that you can do is to renovate your outdoor space this new year.

    Here are five easy ways to help you renovate your outdoor space:

    • Outdoor kitchen – If you love food and cooking, why not bring your kitchen outdoors? You can cook your food while entertaining your guests at the same time. Make sure that you have enough space outdoors to accommodate kitchen equipment. Choose equipment and furniture that can withstand the harsh elements. This is a great idea for those who always have friends and family over for special occasions.

    • Water features – Adding a water feature to your garden can decrease the temperatures during the summer and it can also be a conversation starter among friends. Choose a water feature that will match the theme of your outdoor furniture and home. You can install overflowing structures, fountains, and even a small pond. Add a few water plants and flowers that will add color to your outdoor space.

    • Relaxation space – Another element that you can add to your outdoor area is a relaxation space where you can lounge and read a book while enjoying the cool breeze or the sunshine. A relaxation space can be as simple as a hammock, or a daybed where you can take a nap. Add a rack full of books, magazines, or board games for when you have guests over. 

    • Casual seating – If your outdoor furniture is a little bit outdated, maybe it’s time for you to invest and purchase a new outdoor furniture set. Updating your furniture can change the aesthetics of your home. You can choose new colors, styles, and materials that will transform your outdoor space into something that will be inviting to your guests. Make sure there is enough seating for your family and for people who will come over to visit you.

    • Fire pit – You don’t have to go to a camping ground in the summer if you already have your own fire pit. A fire pit is another element that you can add to your outdoor space, so that you have a place where you can entertain your guests. You can listen to music, chat with your buddies, or even roast marshmallows by the fire. 

    These are five simple ways you can renovate your outdoor space. Welcome the new year by changing your outdoor space. These little changes can make a big difference in your home. Before you start, make sure that you have a solid plan on what you intend to do. You can also seek help from a yard waste removal service, so that you can eliminate all the waste in your yard before you start your renovations. You can also seek help from a designer if you want a stylish outdoor area that you can be proud of!

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    Simple Tips & Tricks To Transform Your Home In 2015

    If you are tired of the usual look of your home, maybe it’s time for a transformation. It’s also timely to do this at the start of the year, so you can have a new start. You might think that transforming your home into something new is expensive, but there are some things that you can do to make your transformation cheap. Here are a few tips and tricks for your home transformation this 2015.

    • Paint rooms – One of the cheapest things that you can do to transform your home is to paint rooms. You can be surprised at how changing the colors of your walls can make a huge difference. For small rooms in the house, opt for lighter shades to make the room look larger. Make sure that the color you choose matches the colors of your furniture and other items in your home.

    • Add a place for your pets – If you decided to get a pet last year, transform your home by adding a space for your beloved pet. You can install a home beneath the stairs or add a hole to your kitchen door. Create space for your pet, so that it can feel at home in your abode.

    • Install additional storage – If you’ve had your home for a long time, you are most likely running out of space for your items. Adding storage to your home doesn’t always mean a full construction job. There are plenty of shops that offer modern storage that you can move around the house. Choose wisely and make sure that the storage you choose doesn’t cramp your space.

    • Add decorations – You can update your home and make it more modern by adding a few decorations that will improve the way your home looks. Simple decorations such as vases, mirrors, and mantelpieces can change the way your house looks. If you are saving money, what you can do is visit garage sales and vintage shops where you can find wonderful items.

    • Add plants to your home – Is your home feeling a bit drab and lifeless? One good idea is to place potted plants in your home. Adding a few plants will improve the energy in your home and it will also make your home feel more alive. If you want a bit of color, choose potted flowers that are in season.

    • Purchase area rugs – Rugs can add warmth and texture to your otherwise plain floor. If you have wooden floors, adding area rugs can easily transform the ambiance of a room. Add one near the fireplace or even in your bedroom. Choose patterns that will work well with your furniture and theme of your home.

    Transforming your home into something new doesn’t have to be difficult and costly. These are some of the cost-effective solutions that you can do to make little changes that will make a big difference. You don’t always need power tools or a hexagon broach to make these changes. If you know the style that you want and you know how to achieve it, your home transformation will be a breeze.

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    Alternative Delivery Procedures: Everything You Need To Know About Giving Birth

    Some women prefer alternative delivery procedures when giving birth. These procedures are becoming more and more popular. They give women different choices when it comes to giving birth, and some say that it is easier and less stressful than having to give birth in a hospital. There are plenty of alternative delivery procedures available today. Here are some of them.

    Water Birth
    This is probably one of the most popular alternative delivery methods. The mother will give birth in a birthing tub with the aid of a midwife or an obstetrician. It is said that giving birth in a warm tub of water soothes and calms the mother, which is helpful when the contractions come. Though this is a common alternative birth method, it also comes with risks, which include water embolism, snapping of the umbilical cord, and water aspiration.

    Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese method of inserting needles on different parts of the body in order to stimulate energy flow. According to some studies, the needles can make the labor easier. In one particular study, women who received acupuncture were less likely to want an epidural. In addition, acupuncture can also trigger labor in women who have had their water broken.

    A doula is a professional who provides emotional and physical support to a pregnant woman. Doulas develop their relationship with the expecting mother months before the baby arrives. They provide support from when the baby is still in the womb, up until after the baby is born. Studies say that having a doula makes delivering a baby easier for the mother, because of the emotional and physical support that she gets.

    The Bradley Method
    This alternative delivery procedure was made popular by Robert A. Bradley, M.D. in the 1940’s. This method is ideal for couples who want the husband to be more involved during the birthing process. Couples enroll in a class where both the husband and wife are prepared on what to expect and what they need to do during childbirth. With this method, women do not undergo surgery or drugs. It is a natural birthing method with the husband as the coach.

    Some women say that self-hypnosis is a good way to lessen the pain experienced when delivering a baby. With this method, women must teach their brains to believe that giving birth provides a comfortable feeling. Studies also show that women who opt for hypnosis before childbirth can lessen their need for pain medication when they go into labor.

    These are some of the alternative methods of giving birth. If you are not comfortable about the idea of giving birth in a hospital while a doctor uses chalazion forceps to deliver your baby, one of these methods might be suitable for you. You can talk to your doctor and do your own research on these types of methods to see which one you feel most comfortable with. Most importantly, make sure that your baby’s health is your priority when you choose one of these alternative birthing methods.

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    5 Unusual Ways To Stay Healthy In 2015

    You need to be healthy in order to make sure that you are in tip-top condition to do the things that you need to do. Aside from exercising and eating your daily serving of fruits and vegetables, there are other ways you can be healthy this 2015. And the best news is that this does not involve spending hours at a time at the gym, which is a good thing for those who hate exercising.

    Here are five unusual ways on how you can stay healthy in 2015.

    Sing your heart out
    If you love singing, then this is the perfect way for you to stay healthy. However, this doesn’t mean that you sing any way you want. If you want to get the health benefits of singing, you have to sing using your diaphragm. This promotes a healthy lymphatic system, which can boost your immune system. Learn how to sing with your friends or family. You won’t only be having fun, you will also be on your way to being healthy this year.

    Drink chocolate milk
    If you are the type who enjoys exercising, then you already know that you must recover your muscles after working out. According to experts, drinking chocolate milk allows your body to recover and make your muscles stronger. Milk is one of the best sources of protein, while chocolate is helpful in restoring the energy that you lost while working out.

    Listen to music
    For music lovers, this is not something that’s hard to do. If you don’t listen to music on a daily basis, it’s time that you should do so. Expert say that music is helpful in lessening stress levels, increasing concentration, relieving pain, and lowering blood pressure. After a long day at work or a busy day at home, take time to relax and listen to your favorite type of music. It will help you keep calm. It doesn’t necessarily have to be classical music, too!

    Take pole dancing
    If you want to have a sexy body in time for the summer and you don’t want to hit the gym and use complicated exercise equipment, you can start by using a pole. Enroll in pole dancing classes and you will notice increase in strength and toned muscles. In addition, it will also help you boost your confidence. See? Exercising is not always torture! Have fun with your friends while pole dancing and you might even want to have a pole installed in your own home.

    Do the corset diet
    The corset diet can help you slim down, so you can get that ideal hourglass shape. The corset diet entails having to wear a corset that is about four to five inches smaller than the size of your waist. Of course, you need to seek help from an expert before you do this. If you wear a corset and have a healthy diet, you can get that shapely waist that you’ve always wanted. You can check out corsets online to get you started.

    These are five of the unusual ways you can stay healthy this year. If you change your routine and do fun things to keep you healthy, you will be more motivated to stay healthy the whole year round!

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    Monday, January 12, 2015

    #Giveaway $200 Gift Card to Lush Decor

    The new year is upon us, and aside from the resolutions that we are all trying to keep, I also enjoy changing things up in my home, and starting the new year off with a fresh new look. This can be done easily, by just adding a little something here and there, and by changing out things in various rooms. 
    I can do this by simply changing out my curtains, the decorative pillows on my couches and chairs, or by getting new bedding for the bedrooms in my home. Making the changes simple, but noticeable. Well, to help with giving my home those new looks for the new year, I was given the chance to review a great comforter set from Lush Decor!
    Lush Decor is a line that you find in many stores like Kohl's, Bed Bath and Beyond and more. And when you shop the products from Lush Decor, you can find the items that can help when it comes to giving the various rooms in your home a new look. 
    From the bedroom to the bathroom and even the family room, I like that when I shop the products from Lush Decor, I can find the variety and styles that I am looking for, helping to bring rooms together and give them a new look.  Making the Lush Decor line, one that I shop when it comes to my home! 

    To help with giving giving your home a new look, the wonderful people from Lush Decor would like to give one of my amazing readers a $200 gift card!

    Product received, thank you to Lush Decor as well as the PR for supplying me with a product for this review, all opinions are my own.
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    #Giveaway The Identical on DVD US & Canada

    When it comes to finding family movies to add to our family movie nights, I enjoy finding ones that offer not only a great story, but also ones that offer some amazing lessons to pick up on while watching them. So when we were sent the new movie, The Identical on DVD, to watch and review, I was pleased to add it to our list of family movies!

    In the movie, The Identical, you find a family, one that is a family that follows lessons based on faith, and through those lessons, they learn to live the lives they were meant to have. The story is about twin brothers, who are separated when they are infants, giving one of the twins to a pastor and his wife, due to their biological parents not being able to care for twins during the Great Depression. The secret is one that is kept, but one that many can not overlook when one of the twins becomes a famous singer.

    The twin who was raised by the reverend, finds he has a love for music, such a love that is ingrained in his soul. He learns to take the journey that he sees as being his true calling, and how this love for music brings his life into perspective in the most unexpected way.

    We found this movie to be an amazing family movie, and you can too by heading out to get your copy today! Also, you can enter to win a copy of The Identical on DVD below!

    "Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.
     Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.

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    Disney's Planes Fire & Rescue on Blu-Ray

    In my house, we enjoy our family movie nights, and on our family movie nights, we look forward to adding new favorites to the list. Recently we were sent the new Disney movie, Planes Fire and Rescue to review.

    This movie makes for a great family movie, bringing Dusty back to the screen as he joins in the efforts of a elite fire and rescue crew! Dusty learns many lessons along the way, along with the importance of being able to have a second chance, after finding out that due to some engine damage, he may never race again. Dusty makes new friends, and finds out what it is like and what it takes to be a real hero!

    We enjoyed adding the Disney's Planes Fire and Rescue to our list of faves and you can too by bringing your copy home today!

    Product received, thank you to Disney Movies as well as the PR for supplying me with a product for this review, all opinions are my own.
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