"Giveaway Love is in the Air" Blog Hop

Welcome to Giveaway Love is in the Air, sponsored by The Maven of Social Media. We all love a great giveaway and what’s better than one that comes from the heart? Make your way through the linky and enter to win prizes full of love, romance and friendship! All prize packages are valued at $25 or more!

Make sure to enter the grand prize giveaway to have a beautiful bouquet of flowers delivered to you or the recipient of your choice. The Maven of Social Media is sponsoring one Sunshine Valentine Romance Bouquet to a reader of one of the participating blogs! 

I thought long and hard about what to give away for this event.  

Rockin' Coffee has been generous enough to offer the winner their choice Full size bag of coffee.  I chose coffee because it's nice to sit down to a cup of coffee with your spouse or a friend to catch up.

I will be giving the winner their very own copy of The Excellent Wife.  I have a copy of this book and I LOVE it.  I have not had the chance to read through the whole thing.  I am about half way through.  It is a must read of any wife.  It will change your relationship with your husband in amazing ways.

Just fill out the Rafflecopter form below(you may have to click "read more").

My Goals: Week 4 Update (with a "Detox" update)

HI! It's time for my weekly update again!  If you are new and don't know what my Goals are or are interested in my updates you can get them HERE.

Being a "yes" mom.
This last week went great.  I have changed this goal from being just a "yes" mom to being a better mom.  This week's "detox" went really well.  We did take a 1 hour break in the middle of the week.  Madelynn got to watch a movie and I did some blogging/email answering.  Other than that we had a good week.  Saturday I did need a break.  I don't know if it was me or Madelynn or both of us but we weren't getting along.  She wasn't listening and I was easily frustrated.  So she went to her Aunt's house for the night.  Sunday when I picked her up she was clingy and listened and has been listening great since.  We still haven't brought the toys back out yet.  She hasn't asked for them either.  She has been asking for movies.  I let her watch 1 yesterday morning.
I love the "detox".  I get more done during the day.  I spend more time with the girls.  Which is needed now since Hayleigh is army crawling every where very quickly.  I'll have to post a video of it.
If you "detoxed" this week how did it go?

Loose 100lbs this year.
Well, I guess I'm doing good.  I am down 15.8lbs.  The only thing is I'm frozen.  My weight hasn't budged since last week Thursday or Friday.  I was seeing at least a .2 decrease a day.  Now nothing.  It's alittle discouraging.  I think I'm going to set weigh-in days.  That way I don't get so discouraged.  It's just really hard with the scale right there every time I'm in the bathroom not to weigh myself.
I'm having problems with exercising.  I live in an upstairs apartment and my neighbors aren't liking the 30 day shred with it's jumping jacks, jump ropes, and butt kicks.  I need to find something else that's as effective and doesn't cause as much sound.  It needs to be something I can do at home because I can't seem to be able to find the time or child care to go run or go to Zumba.
I know I'm still ahead of my goal.  It's just discouraging that I was dropping so quickly and now nothing.
My knee also hurts.  I know it's because those muscles are weak and I'm so over weight.  It just makes exercising hard when there's pain.  But I suck it up.  I want to loose.
I know it's a big whine fest this week.  Hopefully my next update will be better.

How are you doing with your goals?  Need someone to whine to or someone to help you stay accountable?



"Pin Me!" - Birthday Parties

I am participating in week 4 of the "Pin Me!" Pinterest Hop hosted by Matter of Cents and Shopping for Savings.
This week I got to pick my own theme.  It was a tough one!  I ended up picking Birthday Parties.  I LOVE throwing and planning birthday parties.  If I could get a job as a birthday party planner I totally would!
So this will be a VERY full post!

Minnie Mouse
Hayleigh is going to have a Minnie Mouse 1st birthday.  Pinterest has so "minnie" cute ideas! 
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Monster Mash
My Nephew who was born the day before Hayleigh is having a monster first birthday.  
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Tea Time
Then there's to"tea"ly cool ideas for a Tea Party
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Over the Rainbow
Or how about a Wizard of Oz party?
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What a Hoot!
And finally an Owl party.  One day I will get to throw the owl party of my dreams!
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I hope you enjoyed the birthday party ideas.  If you ever need someone to help you plan a party just let me know!
Be sure to stop over at Matter of Cents and Shopping for Savings to check out what the other bloggers chose to pin this week.  And join in on the fun!
Follow Me on Pinterest


Transformers Prime: The Complete First Season on Blu-ray and DVD

I know a boy and some parents that will be pretty excited about this series.  The Transformers movies would be great if there wasn't all of the horrible language and sexual references.  This cartoon series doesn't have that from what I can tell.  Great for any boy who likes Transformers but can't watch it because the new movies are just inappropriate.


Featuring Over 10 Hours of Non-Stop Action, Special Bonus Content and More!



"Prepare to experience the world of TRANSFORMERS PRIME like never before with perfect picture visuals and the purest digital sound available when the entire first season of the award-winning CGI animated series TRANSFORMERS PRIME arrives in stores everywhere in North America on March 6, 2012 in a deluxe 4-DVD set and a Limited Edition 4-Disc Blu-ray™ collection from Shout! Factory, in collaboration with Hasbro Studios.

Both the DVD and Blu-ray collections of TRANSFORMERS PRIME: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON boast all 26 action-packed episodes (including the 5-part miniseries Darkness Rising) and special bonus content. For a limited time only, TRANSFORMERS PRIME: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON Limited Edition 4-Disc Blu-ray contains a 96-page IDW graphic novel based on this hit series.

Delivering a new level of heavy metal action and family entertainment for all ages, the limited edition Blu-ray collection is priced to own at $64.99 SRP. The deluxe 4-DVD set is sold separately and has a suggested retail price of $ 29.93 SRP.

The TRANSFORMERS saga starts a new chapter as old foes return, legendary heroes rise, and new ones are found in unlikely places. The new EMMY Award winning series TRANSFORMERS PRIME, A Hasbro Studios production, currently airs on The HUB television network in the U.S. and Teletoons in Canada, deepens the epic mythology of both the AUTOBOTS and DECEPTICONS, while starting a new chapter for a new generation of fans.

In early 2011, loyal TRANSFORMERS fans, as well as families and kids, were introduced to this visually stunning five-part miniseries on The HUB. OPTIMUS PRIMEBUMBLEBEEARCEE, AUTOBOTRATCHETBULKHEAD, and many others are back to "roll out" against MEGATRON's latest attempt to conquer Earth. And MEGATRON proves to be more powerful than ever, having acquired a rare element that allows him mastery over life itself. OPTIMUS PRIME and the AUTBOTS may be few against the DECEPTICON hordes, but they find increased strength through bonds forged with three human teenagers.

Season One of TRANSFORMERS PRIME boasts an all-star voice cast, including Peter Cullen, Frank Welker, Steve Blum, Jeffrey Combs, Adam Baldwin, Markie Post, Ernie Hudson, among other notables.TRANSFORMERS PRIME is produced by Hasbro Studios, with Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci and Jeff Kline serving as executive producers. Kurtzman and Orci served as writers for the feature films TRANSFORMERS and TRANSFORMERS: Revenge of the Fallen

TRANSFORMERS PRIME recently garnered two Emmy® Awards for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Animation and six Emmy nominations.


Bonus Content

  • Original Making of Special
  • 15 Audio Commentaries with the Creative Team and Voice Cast
  • Toy Featurette
  • Season Two Teaser Debuted at New York Comic-Con 2011"

Available for pre-order from Amazon and Shout! Factory Store.


Finding Nemo in 3D

I love that Disney is re-releasing all of these great movies in 3D.  They were movies I loved as a child and now I get to share the movie theater experience with my children.  They are releasing some of my favorites!  Beauty and the Beast was the coolest because my parents took me to see it not long after I turned 3.  I got to take Madelynn to see it right after she turned 3.  It was way cool for me!
Finding Nemo is being released to theaters in 3D September 14, 2012!  Just in time for my birthday!

"Academy Award®-winning Best Animated Feature “Finding Nemo” returns to the big screen for the first time ever in thrilling Disney Digital 3D™. In this stunning underwater adventure, with memorable characters, humor and heartfelt emotion, “Finding Nemo” follows the comedic and momentous journey of an overly protective clownfish named Marlin (voice by Albert Brooks) and his son Nemo (voice by Alexander Gould)––who become separated in the Great Barrier Reef when Nemo is unexpectedly taken far from his ocean home and dumped into a fish tank in a dentist’s office. Buoyed by the companionship of Dory (voice by Ellen DeGeneres), a friendly-but-forgetful Pacific regal blue tang, Marlin embarks on a dangerous trek and finds himself the unlikely hero of an epic effort to rescue his son––who hatches a few daring plans of his own to return safely home."

You can "like" Finding Nemo on Facebook for more updates.  Also subscribe to DisneyPixar on Youtube to be in the loop when they release more trailers!


My Goals: Week 3 Update

If you're new you can see my goals for the year and my updates HERE.

Being a "yes" mom.
I think I'm getting the hand of this.  I think Madelynn and I are both much happier and she is listening better.  If you haven't already check out my plans for this next week.

Loose 100lbs
This is going GREAT! I slowed down on the weight loss.  That was expected.  I lost 5lbs a week the first 2 weeks.  You're not really supposed to do that.  This week I lost 3lbs.  That puts me at 13.4lbs lost and 86.6lbs to go!  That's not bad!  Actually it's pretty great! I'm already where I expected to be around February 13th.  This week I did eat some unhealthy things like a frozen burrito, homemade fried onion rings, pizza, and chips and queso dip.  But on the flip side of that I resisted eating fast food 3 times in one day!  I was way proud of myself.  Fast food is my weakness.  I crave it more than ice cream or chocolate.  But the three times I was put in the situation where I could get some that day I didn't even want it.
I didn't get to actually start the C25K like I wanted to.  I got to do the first day and then the rest of the week it was WAY to cold.  I'm just gonna stick with the 30 Day Shred as long as my neighbors aren't home while the girls are napping.  We live in an upstairs apartment and the neighbors bang on the floor when I'm doing jumping jacks or butt kicks.

How are you doing with your goals?

Let Me Just Clarify

From the comments on my "detox" post I realized that I did not completely explain why I took ALL of Madelynn's toys away aside from her easel, books, and mega blocks.
Not only are her toys easy things for me to just say "go play" when I want to accomplish something but they are a huge cause of her disobedience.
When I tell her to clean up her toys she refuses 80% of the time. When I ask her to do something like get dressed or put her shoes on so we can leave she will tell me no because she needs to "play for just one more minute".
I have taken her toys away so she realizes she doesn't need them.
Then I will gradually give them back.
I know it may be my fault for not being more consistent with discipline. I'm just fixing it now before she gets worse and becomes disobedient in other areas.
In NO WAY am I catering to Madelynn constantly to make her happy this week. I have Hayleigh to take care of and housework to do as well. Madelynn knows how to entertain herself. She knows she can color, look at books, or build with mega blocks. She can dance and sing as well.
Children a long time ago didn't have toys and television like our children do now. They entertained themselves or helped their mother with household duties. They were well behaved and respectful. Parents then did not cater to their children and I am not doing that now. I am essentially teaching her and reminding myself that possessions are not needed to entertain you or make you happy.
I am excited that there are people joining me on this journey. I realize it is not for everyone. I hope you now have a better understanding to my reasoning behind it.


Fooled Ya! Potato Soup

Tonight I made Potato Soup.  It was a collaboration from a few recipes I had seen.  I took the things I liked from each of them.  Put my own twist on it and got to cookin.
My family LOVED it.  Well except Hayleigh.  I let her taste it and she spit it right back out at me with a horrible look on her face.  But what can ya do.  That baby doesn't seem to like anything but baby mum mums, green beans, and sweet potatoes.
Anyway, the recipe is so good I thought I'd share it with you so you can make some for your family.  Then when they let you know how awesome it is you can tell them what is really in it!

Fooled Ya! Potato Soup
1 head of cauliflower
3-4 potatoes(I used 4 and they were each the size of a baseball)
1 1/2 cup chicken broth(I used Aldi's Fit n Active low sodium no fat chicken broth)
1 cup milk
3/4 cup sour cream(I used light sour cream)
salt and pepper to taste
garlic powder to taste(I didn't add it this time but I think it would be awesome with just a little)
bacon cumbles for topping
cheddar cheese for topping
green onion or chives for topping

Cut the cauliflower into flowerettes.  Place it in a pot.  Fill with enough water to just cover the cauliflower.  Boil until very tender. 
While the cauliflower is boiling "bake" your potatoes in the microwave until tender.  Takes anywhere from 5-10 minutes depending on the size of your potato.
Also while the cauliflower is cooking you can cook your bacon.
When the cauliflower is done(about 20 minutes? I didn't time it) drain it.  
Place the cauliflower and 1 peeled and cut up potato in the food processor.  You can also use one of those cool hand blenders.  Puree it completely.
Put it back into the pot.  Add the chicken broth, milk, and sour cream to the cauliflower/potato puree.  Whisk it until blended.
Peel and cube the remaining potatoes.  Add them to the pot.
Let it cook until the potato cubes are as tender as you want them but still whole.  I didn't cook it together for long enough.  Casey said the potato cubes should have been softer.  I'd say 20 minutes at the most
When it's done put it in bowls.  Top with bacon, cheese, and green onions.
It really is amazing.  Casey really liked it aside from the potatoes not being soft enough for him.  After he was done I told him the majority of it was cauliflower.  He said, "really? cauliflower?".
On top of it being so tastey a 1 cup serving(without toppings because everyone has a preference) is only 156 calories.  The recipe makes 8 servings.  Casey and I both ate 2 cups and were really full.  I felt almost too full.  Next time I'll just eat the 1 cup serving and a salad.
Sorry, it's not the greatest picture!  I didn't know I was going to post about this so I didn't take a picture until I was almost done!

If you try it out let me know how you like it!

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A "Detox". If You Will.

"Detox" isn't my term.  My friend came up with it when I tweeted about what I am going to do this week.
I am "Detoxing" my home of distractions and objects that separate me from my children.  Things that cause us to argue and not accomplish what we should.
I have cleaned up ALL of Madelynn's toys.  I put them in boxes, baskets, and bags.  I placed those in a closet and locked it.  The only things I left out are Madelynn's books and her Easel.  All of Hayleigh's toys are still out but Madelynn knows she is not to play with them.

I am setting the parental controls on my Blu-ray player so that for any movie to be played I have to type in a code.
My computer and laptop will not be turned on or used by me between the hours of 7am and 8pm(or bedtime).
My phone will only be used for important conversations, important texts, and myfitnesspal.  I will use no other features between the time of 7am and 8pm.

This week rather than playing on the computer, I will read to my children.
Rather than sitting Madelynn in front of the television so I can get stuff done, I will have her right next to me helping me do my house work.  I know it will take longer but it will be worth it. 
Rather than telling Madelynn to play doll house so I can get "just one more" post written or email answered, I will do a craft with Madelynn.
Rather than checking my Facebook page to see who commented or posted something, I will help Hayleigh learn to stand at her activity table or crawl.
I am replacing distractions and objects with actions and memories.

Somewhere along the line I lost track.  I am going to fix that.  
This week is going to be hard on me.  That alone is a sad sad statement.  It should not be hard on me to properly mother my children.  I shouldn't be wondering how I'm going to get through this.  This should all be normal for me.  It used to be normal for me.
After this week is over I will add things back in.  But not to the extreme that they were.  I will work harder at this.  Not for myself but for my children.  They need me to be their mother.  Not just some lady that does the basic things then distracts them with inanimate objects so I "can get something done".  I should be down there in the floor playing with them every minute that I can.  Doing every craft that I can.  Baking together whenever we feel they urge.  They are only little for so long.  I will have all the time I could ever imagine when they are grown.  I need to spend my time wisely now.
Will you join me?  Will you "Detox" your home of the distractions for just one week?  Will you bring yourself back to the mother you know you can be?

Please read THIS follow up post for more understanding.

Attention Bloggers!

Diamond Candles is looking for some bloggers to sign up for a Review and Giveaway Opportunity from them.  You can find the info HERE.



Forget the Resolutions(or not) Giveaway Hop

Forget The Resolutions Giveaway Hop
January 21 - 26, 2012

Hosted by Planet Weidknecht and
Going Crazy!!Wanna Go??
"It's been three weeks since you've made all those resolutions.
It's said that it takes 21 days to make a new habit, so you've probably already broken your New Year's Resolutions.
I say - FORGET THE RESOLUTIONS! Let's have a giveaway hop instead!
The Forget The Resolutions Giveaway Hop runs from January 21 @ 12:01 a.m. EST to January 26 @ 11:59 p.m. EST. Each blogger is hosting their own giveaway of at least $20.00. After you enter my giveaway, be sure to visit the other blogs and enter theirs too!"

I haven't forgotten my Resolutions.  But maybe you have.  If that's the case I'm here to help you get them back!  I know.  Totally off theme.  But I'm all for encouraging each other to reach our goals.
So for this hop I am giving away things for those trying to loose some weight or just be healthier.
Supreme Protein bars to help you have a healthy low carb snack so you don't put on those extra pounds.
Boston Tea Company tea so that you have a refreshing drink after a tough day without calories or extra stuff you don't need.

3 winners will win a box of Supreme Protein Bars.
1 winner will win a Boston Tea Company gift card.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Fabulous bloggers hosting amazing giveaways:



Pin Me! Pinterest Hop: The Year of the Dragon

I'm participating in the "Pin me!" Pinterest Hop hosted by Matter of Cents and Shopping for Savings.  This is week 3 of the hop and the theme is "The Year of the Dragon".
I admit when I saw this theme I said, "uhhhhhhh..."  I had no clue what I was going to pin.  But I went over to Pinterest and started searching.  In no time I had plenty of stuff to pin.

We'll start with some REAL DRAGONS!
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Here are some Dragon foods.
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And finally some Dragon crafts.
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See, finding Dragon stuff wasn't that hard after all.  It may not have to do with the whole Chinese New Year thing but it works.  
Head over to Matter of Cents and Shopping for Savings to see what they pinned and check out other people's pins.
As always, if you'd like an invitation to Pinterest leave me a comment!


I Have Some VERY Exciting News!!

Are you ready for it?!
I don't think you are!
Also releasing on Digital Download and ON Demand at the same time.

Told you you weren't ready!
I loved watching the Muppets as a kid.  Every form, from Seseame Street, to Fraggle Rock, to the Muppet Show.  I loved all of it.
I didn't get to go see it in theaters when it came out Thanksgiving because Hayleigh was still nursing every 2 hours and she was sick.  But now I get to own it!!!
Press Release:

"One of the year’s best-loved family comedies and among the best reviewed films of 2011, Disney’s “The Muppets,” starring Jason Segel, Academy Award®-nominee Amy Adams, and favorite celebrity couple Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy -- debuts March 20 on Blu-ray™ Combo Pack, DVD, Digital Download and On-Demand formats. A must-own movie the entire family can enjoy, Disney’s “The Muppets” in-home release includes the DVD and music soundtrack packaged together and also offered as the ultimate Muppets experience, a ‘Wocka-Wocka Value Pack,’ which contains the movie on Blu-ray high definition, DVD and Digital Copy (three discs), plus a download card which allows fans to own all the songs from the film’s hugely popular soundtrack.
Disney’s “The Muppets” Blu-ray Combo Pack, with its flawless picture and pitch perfect sound, comes with a fantastic slate of bonus content including the laugh out loud “The Longest Blooper Reel Ever Made (In Muppet History––We Think).” The exciting release also includes the hilarious featurette “A Little Screen Test on the Way to the Read Through,” which follows Jason Segel, Kermit, The Great Gonzo, Fozzie Bear, Miss Piggy and others as they get ready for the first day of production, and much more fun.

"Blu-ray is a great way to bring the Muppets into your home without having to worry about cleaning up after us,” said Kermit the Frog, commenting on the announcement. “And the behind-the-scenes extras are a revealing tell-all look at what it took to bring our movie to the big screen. It’s a must-see for fans of bloopers, flubs and slip-ups – which pretty much describes our act.”
Miss Piggy is equally thrilled at the movie’s Blu-ray release, “Now you can watch moi whenever you want! Ooh! Lucky vous!”
Additional fun-filled features on Disney’s “The Muppets” Blu-ray include a groundbreaking industry first -- ‘Disney Intermission,’ a hilarious all-new feature that allows viewers to press Pause on their remote control and watch as the Muppets take over the screen and entertain until the movie resumes playing. The release also includes “Explaining Evil: The Full Tex Richman Song,” an extended version of the rollicking rap song by villain Tex Richman (Academy Award® winner Chris Cooper) who provides the hilarious backstory of why he hates the Muppets. Audio commentaries with screenwriter and star Jason Segel, director James Bobin and screenwriter Nicholas Stoller are also included.
With the Muppet’s signature irreverent comedy, songs and dancing, Muppet fans of all ages will cheer as the gang reunites to put on a benefit show to save the crumbling Muppet Studios from being razed by nefarious oil baron Tex Richman. New fans and long-time devotees will find the rainbow connection when they bring Disney’s “The Muppets” into their very own homes."

I'm looking forward to the new pause feature as well!  The Muppets taking over my TV sounds AWESOME!
Just in case you've been living under a rock for the last who knows how long, or if you really just want to watch it again, here's the movie trailer.

You can view even more Muppet awesomeness at Disney.com/Muppets.  You can also get updates when they happen from the Muppets on Facebook at Facebook.com/Muppets.

I think I'm done geeking out of the day.  Who else is excited?!