Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Who likes FREE stuff??

http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/landsendrachaelrayholiday2010 Complete this survey for a chance to win a $50 gift card from Land's End!!

Electrolux Rumpled to Runway

September is also Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month, and all month long, Electrolux is donating $200 to OCRF for every new Turquoise Sky Perfect Steam™ washer/dryer pair purchased1.You can also show your support by pressing the Perfect Steam™ button at http://www.kelly-confidential.com/ and entering for a chance to win a daily shopping spree and the grand prize: a Perfect Steam™ washer and dryer from Electrolux.

"What Matters Most to Me" from the LIFE Foundation

September is Life Insurance Awareness Month (LIAM). The LIFE Foundation has created the "What Matters Most to Me" Facebook app, which lets you easily create a multimedia slideshowshowcasing the important people and things in your life. It is so cool! You all should check it out!
We luckily have awesome insurance through the military. But every family should really consider getting it. Just think about if something were to happen to you, or to your spouse. I don't think anyone should be without it!! With our family, if something were to happen to me for example.....my husband would be devastated and so would my kids. But not only that if we didn't have life insurance, he would have to worry about the added expense of childcare for our children. If I lost him, we would lose our provider. Even the kids need coverage! I cannot imagine, nor do I want to, losing one of my children. But to have to think about funeral or medical expenses....terrible. Just think about getting it if you don't have it already! Check out the facebook app to see what it is all about too!

Versatile Blogger Award!

Thanks to my friend HyperactiveLu for giving me this award!! Part of it is that I have to list 7 random facts about me. So here goes:

1. I hate to clean. That is no secret if you have ever been to my house!! Laundry is the worst. I have a real problem getting it all done and then folding and then putting it away!! Yuck! I hate laundry!!!

2. I sometimes feel very inadequate as a mother.

3. I love to sing and I pray my children develop a love for music as well. I think it started with my Grandparents. They always were very encouraging. They made a big deal about my singing when I was little. My Grandpa would take me to different plays and "shows" because he knew it was something we both enjoyed very much. They always made a point to be there for every concert, play or competition I was ever in. In our family we get together for holidays like any other family. But a special thing our family does is we sing together. We gather around the piano with our Lutheran hymnal and we sing. This was a little culture shock for my husband. He wasn't used to it at all!! I think that is something that makes my family special and unique.

4. We tried to get pregnant for 3 years when we were first married. Then we ended up doing in vitro because my fertility doctors said it wouldn't happen on its own. :) We had Leah and then TWO more, naturally!! I am so thankful for those babies of mine. I think longing for a child and having to go through what we went through to have Leah makes me even more appreciative of them. They are little blessings. Sometimes they try my patience and I wonder how I am going to get through the day. BUT, they are wonderful and I wouldn't trade them for the world!

5. I am not a dog person. I have a dog and I love that little rat of a canine. But I am not a dog person. I told myself I would never get another puppy when we re homed Carly. She was a 90 pound mutt and the most lovable sweetest doggie ever. She let Leah crawl all over her and poke her in the eyes and bite her ears. She was great. But we were moving to Texas into a tiny apartment from a big house with a yard. It wasn't fair to her. She has a great home and is very happy there. She has a farm to run around on and a loving owner.

6. I mourn the loss of my cats terribly. Again the Texas thing. I had my cats for 8 years, Stuart and Stanley. I had them all ready to fly to Texas and we found out that I had to fly them and my Mom couldn't. It was purely a financial thing. The airline told us it would be $90 each to fly them because of the military discount. Well, because my Mom was the one shipping them to us, she couldn't get the discount. That was even with them having a copy of my ID and I was paying. It would have been close to $700 to fly my two cats to us. We just didn't have it. But again they have a great home with kids. I hope they are spoiled in their old age. I do miss them. I was so lucky to have found them a GOOD home at the very last minute.

7. I respect my husband. He has done so much for me and our little family. He never complains about being the provider. He is a genuinely good guy. Of course he has his faults, like every does. But I love that man! He loves his children so much. It is a joy and a privilege to watch him with them. The only Father figure I had growing up was my Grandpa. He was a great father figure. But I always longed to have a relationship with my Dad. He is toxic though so it just was never possible. It is really neat to see how a Dad is supposed to be with Jeremy. I love the fact that when Lauren is hurt or afraid she wants him. It only hurts my feelings for a second then I get over it. :) I love that Leah can't wait to tell her Daddy everything about her day. I love the way Micah's face lights up when he sees his hero, his Daddy. I am so proud of Jeremy for what he is doing for our family and our country. I know it is very frustrating at times for him. He has worked so hard to be where he is. He did that for me, for our kids. I think he is pretty great. I love you Jeremy VanVeelen! Thanks for being my husband and the father of our children!

Well, there are 7 random things about me. I guess I have to pick 7 blogs to tag. So here goes:


Okay girls! I look forward to reading your 7 random facts!! :)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Hellmann's is at it again!

Back-to-school time is here, and for most Moms that means back to car-pooling, homework monitoring and of course, packing lunches. It can be hard to come up with lunches made with real, simple ingredients that kids will eat and actually enjoy. Luckily, Hellmann's® and Best Foods® Mayonnaise are putting the fun back into lunch this September with their virtual Sandwich Swap 'n' Share program.

Celebrity chef Bobby Flay and actress/mom Lori Loughlin are teaming up with Hellm®ann's to help re-launch Hellmann's® virtual Sandwich Swap 'n' Share on the Facebook® application (Facebook.com/Hellmanns). This virtual version of the beloved school lunch ritual of swapping sandwiches will benefit Share Our Strength®, the leading non-profit organization ending childhood hunger in America.

When people visit Hellmann's® Page on Facebook®, they'll have the opportunity to create a sandwich on the application and, for every sandwich built, Hellmann's® will make a donation to Share Our Strength®. What's more, when they share a sandwich with a friend, an additional donation will be made as part of Hellmann's® $75,000 commitment to support Share Our Strength®.

Monday, September 20, 2010

School of Rock! How Cool!

FREE WEEK TO ROCK available NOW thru OCT 31

School of Rock is the national leader in music education and has been teaching kids how to amaze audiences for more than ten years. They offer lessons in guitar, bass, vocals, drums and keyboards for kids ages 7 – 18. No experience necessary just eagerness to learn - School of Rock knows the best way to learn is by doing!

Here are all the details on the promotion:

* Includes one private trial lesson (30-45 min) and one Rock 101 group class (90 min).

* To redeem call 866-371-0557, use code SORBLOG


* Complete the online form and input the SORBLOG code in the Questions/Comments field and the school will contact you directly.

* Free week must be completed by Oct. 31, 2010

* Offer available at participating locations and is subject to scheduling and availability.

* Must mention code SORBLOG when contacting the school to receive the free week.

Check out School of Rock on Facebook and Twitter

Find out where to go to get your FREE week!!

School of Rock US Locations

A Barbie Fashion Fairytale!

We were given the opportunity to review the new Barbie Fashion Fairytale movie from Momselect. Boy was Leah ever excited when she got this!!!!! My girls have watched this movie 4 times in 2 days and both of them are currently glued to the TV watching it yet again!!! Leah doesn't know it but she is getting the Barbie and Ken doll from this movie for her birthday. Leah's favorite thing about the movie is the clothes and shoes. They are so pretty! :) I think it is a tad grown up for her but she loves it. You can check out the website for the movie and watch the trailer here. Have fun playing on the website! There are a couple really cool things on there. Thanks again Momselect for allowing us to review this great movie!! Leah LOOOOOVES it!!!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Zhu-niverse #2!!!

We were invited by Momselect to go out to the Yellow Daisy Festival at Stone Mountain Park near Atlanta, Georgia this past weekend. The Zhu-niverse tour was there and my girls were SO very excited to go to the "Zhu Zhu party". They had this awesome setup there. The kids were able to get pretty hands on with the fun. They had a human size hamster wheel, two tables set up with the Zhu Zhus and their accessories, Nintendo DS games, A human size hamster tunnel, an obstacle course and a station where you could find out which Zhu Zhu you were. Leah and her friend were GLUED to the tables with the Zhu Zhu pets. All Leah has been talking about the last couple days is the Zhu Zhu Flow dance and those little hamsters. They "learned" a dance as well as a 2 and 3 year old possibly can. They were able to dance on stage with Vince. Leah said "Mommy I was a STAR!". So funny! Well hope you enjoy the pictures and make sure you check out the Zhu-niverse Tour dates to see when they are coming your way. It was super fun!!

Gotta love it!

So Leah says to me the other night...."Mommy, when I get 4, can I stay up like you guys?". I say "No, but you can stay up until 8:15 instead of 8." She walks away pumping her arms and saying "Yesssssssssss!! 8 o'clock!! Yesssss!!" Kids are awesome.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Weight Watchers Lose-A-Palooza!!

Lose-A-Palooza is a one-day social media event created to encourage participation in the Lose For Good® campaign to benefit Share Our Strength and Action Against Hunger.

As part of the Lose For Good campaign, Weight Watchers will donate $1, up to a maximum of $60,000, to Share Our Strength and Action Against Hunger for each approved mention, acknowledgment or action related to “Lose For Good” made on September 14th through blogs, Twitter, Facebook and check-in via foursquare.

Important note: there is a difference between Lose For Good and Lose-A-Palooza. Lose For Good is a 7-week campaign, Lose-A-Palooza, on the other hand, is a one-day event as part of the Lose For Good campaign. The event runs one day only – September 14th – and its objective is to drive as much social media awareness as possible for Lose For Good. Every time Lose For Good is mentioned using an approved method on 9/14, Weight Watchers will track the mention and donate a dollar – up to $60,000.

Having trouble trying to meal plan for school nights?? Try Ragu!!

If you're having trouble finding time to prepare nutritious meals for your family while adjusting to new back to school schedules, relax, you're not alone. According to a recent "Feed our Kids Well" survey conducted by Ragú®, half of moms say that during the back-to-school season they have less time to prepare nutritious, home-cooked meals for their kids. Fear not, Mom; Help is on the way!

To help make sure your kids get the veggies they need (and the meals they love) Ragú® Old World Style® Traditional Sauce now has 2 servings of veggies in every half cup! Available soon in major retailers nationwide, the healthy, great tasting Ragú® Old World Style® Traditional pasta sauce that is already a kitchen staple has a new, naturally thicker recipe.

Healthy, delicious and now with a naturally thicker taste the whole family will love, Ragú® Old World Style® Traditional Sauce is a perfect component to pulling together quick and tasty meals during this busy time. And Ragú® wants you to be among the first to try out their great new recipe! To be one of the first to taste Ragú® with 2 servings of veggies in every half-cup visit them on facebook.com/ragusauce for more details.
"Disclosure: I was entered for a chance to win a Ragú® prize package in exchange for this post. No monetary exchange took place."

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Zhu-niverse Tour 2010 part 1

This weekend is the Yellow Daisy Festival at Stone Mountain near Atlanta. I have been invited to go with the kids and friends to the Zhu-niverse Tour that is going to be there. Let me just say I LOOOOOVE Momselect. They sent us a DVD to learn the Zhu Zhu Flo dance. I am not too sure if the kids are old enough to retain the dance moves for longer than 5 minutes. I am also about 99% sure they will be too scared to preform in front of people. But they are having a blast learning it anyway! They also sent us a Pizza Hut gift card and a Kung Fu Zhu Zhu named Drayko. Leah is now OBSESSED with Zhu Zhu's. The child will be 4 in a couple weeks and all she does all day long every single day is list off what she wants for her birthday. We are down to Zhu Zhu's, Barbie's (specific ones she can tell you if you are interested.), a Cinderella horse and all the Cinderella characters and a castle, etc., etc., etc. She could go on for hours about what she wants for her birthday. But anyway, she loves the Zhu Zhu's now. (Thanks Momselect haha) But they are REALLY cool! You turn him on and he makes all kind of cute noises and has a little sensor so if he hits a wall he just turns around and goes in a circle and zips off in the opposite direction. He goes under the couch and disappears for a few minutes and then zips out the other end. So cool. Micah likes to chase him so that could end badly. I did have to scold Leah for putting it ON Lauren's hair after I had already explained what can happen if you get your hair caught in it. (I personally think she was TRYING to rip Lauren's hair out.....but who knows maybe she forgot. lol!) So the festival details can be found here and the Zhu-niverse information can be found here.  Please check them out and come join the fun this weekend! It is supposed to be one of the largest arts and craft shows in the nation!! So cool!