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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Christmas Gift for Teachers (or anyone hard to buy for)

'As a former teacher, let me tell you how many "teacher" type gifts I was given. Mugs, ornaments, random knickknacks.


Oh, how cute.


And useless.


Yes, here is where I sound like an ungrateful brat. But, really, unless the teacher is a first-year newbie, they probably already have all of that stuff. I was gifted with all that sort of thing when I was a student teacher and it was cute then, but after that, notsomuch.


I thought it was really nice any time any of my students thought to give me a gift, though.


And some of my favorite gifts didn't cost anything, like the parents who arranged to take my lunch duty for a week as a gift for teacher appreciation week or the mom who wrote me a four page handwritten letter thanking me for all that I did for her daughter.


Awwww.


There were really good gifts that cost some serious money, too. Woohoo to spa gift certificates for a whole day of pampering and a beach bag full of everything you could possibly need for a day at the beach. Most of the bigger gifts were from my whole class and if you can organize something like that, go for it!


Now that I'm a parent, I feel the pressure to come up with a good gift for my boys' teachers.



I don't have lots of cash to throw around, so I have to figure out how to do something nice for not very much money.


Due to all the germ-madness this year, this is what I came up with:


A Germ-Busting Bucket!




Forgive the craptastic job on the tissue paper- I really need to fix that.

I had three teachers to buy for.
Inside each bucket is:

Lysol sanitizing wipes- $2.92 x 3

Big bottle of GermX instant hand sanitizer- $1.98 x 3

Bottle of Chewable Vitamin C- $2 x 3 (found that bargain at Wally World)

Travel-size kleenx-$.99 for a pack of three

5 bags of Yogi brand tea: Cold Season $4.42 for one box, that I split in 3

On the sparkly tag, I wrote "Miss (insert teacher's name here)'s Germ-Busting Bucket."

So, that's three teacher gifts of something that I think they will actually use, for just over $20 total.


Um, not counting the buckets($2.50 each at Wally World- they have a cute lid with a snowflake on it), tissue paper, and the sparkly tags, which bring my total closer to $30. But, by the time that I was shopping for those items, I had picked up the older two from preschool and had three kids shopping with me, so I went for whatever I saw that I thought was reasonable, instead of shopping around for a better deal. But, still, that means $10 per teacher, which isn't bad at all!


Feel free to steal this idea for your kids' teachers!


Click HERE to see the movie-themed basket I made for my boys' teachers as an end-of-the-year gift.


What are you getting for your children's teachers?



This post was originally published on 12/16/09. But, since there were less than 100 of you around then, I figured it was safe to repost.

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Monday, November 29, 2010

Full of Wonder

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In a house with three boys:


a Kindergartener, a Preschooler, and a toddler,


Life can be LOUD.


And busy.


And messy:


In more ways than one.


But, it is also:


Smiles over Santa and his elves.


Believing in magic.


Cookies baking.


Craft-making:
Even when the glue is in their hair more than on their projects.


Lots of laughter.


Excitement.


Full of wonder.


This is what I wish for you and yours this holiday season:


The wonder.


And to remember:


Those things that don't go as planned:


not to get stressed over them.


It's the memories that are important.


The wonder.


 
But don't forget to blog about the disasters.
So that we can all have a giggle.

Joining in with Merry SITS-mas!
If you are visiting for the first time, you might want to check out this post.

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Saturday, November 27, 2010

Get Fit with Mel B Review

I've never done a great job at working out on my own. I need a workout buddy to meet at the gym- so that I can't change my mind and not go to the gym. Or I need to take a class so that someone is telling me what to do and I can't wimp out and only workout half-heartedly. But, sometimes it's hard to work getting to the gym into my schedule.


Working out at home is hard for me, too. I get tired of doing the same workout dvds. So, there's no motivation there, either.


Here's a way to combine that motivation of a workout partner or instructor with working out at home: With Get Fit with Mel B for the Playstation Move, you get your own personal cheerleader during your workouts! Through the advanced technology of the Playstation Move, you join her on screen and receive feedback.


There are 200+ routines including dance routines, yoga, kickboxing and step aerobics: no boredom here! You can follow your fitness progress with the tracking program, too.


If you want to see it in action, you can check out the video HERE.


Now, I do have to confess my blonde moment to y'all. When I had the opportunity to review this, I thought OH, HOW FUN! I have a Playstation, I should try this.


Guess I thought that somehow, mine would magically be able to detect my movements or maybe that it would come with everything that I needed, I'm not quite sure what was going through my head. You do have to have the Move for this to work.


Luckily, one of my husband's friends has it, so we took it over there for me to try. Yes, Hubs and his friends were highly entertained by me jumping around reviewing this game.


But, now I want a Playstation Move! Dear Santa....


However, if you do have one or are getting one, Get Fit with Mel B would give you a fun workout. And at $39.99, it's cheaper than a gym membership!


This post was written for Family Review Network & Deep Silver who provided the complimentary product for review in exchange for my honest opinions.

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Stocking Stuffer Weekend: Softlips Review and Giveaway

Want to have irresistibly kissable lips this holiday season? Or are you in need of the perfect little gift for a friend?



To celebrate the winter season, Softlips is offering their limited edition Holiday 5-pack of lip conditioners: Sugar & Spice, Winter Mint, Sugar Cookie, Sugar Plum Berry and Mint with a Hint of Vanilla. They come packaged in a festive  blue sachet. It makes for a great stocking stuffer or a final touch on a gift or a little something for yourself as a reward for all that holiday shopping!


Throughout the holiday season this Holidays 5-Pack will be available exclusively in the new Softlips online store for $9.99. From 11/26/10-12/10/10, there is FREE shipping on all orders place in their online store.



I'm always a fan of Softlips and think that they help make my lips soft, especially when I need it in the winter. Already the chillier air is causing my lips to crack, so I always carry one of these around with me. Sugar Cookie is my favorite from this collection.


Want to drop a hint that these would be a great present for you for Christmas? Starting 11/26 you can visit the Softlips Facebook page and click on the “WISH LIST” tab and share your list with your Facebook friends!


One of you will win the Holiday 5-Pack from Softlips!

To enter: If your email is not visible in your profile, you must leave it with your comment. Winner will be announced on this post and notified by email and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be selected. Contest closes at 9pm on 12/4. US only.


Entry options: Please leave a separate comment for each entry that you do.
*Follow Softlips on twitter
*Like Softlips on facebook
*Follow Things I Can't Say(GFC, twitter OR facebook)- one entry total
*Tell me who you want to win this for
*Entered all three of the stocking stuffer giveaways? Conair, Scunci, and Softlips? Leave another comment for an extra entry to win!


 
I was sent some Softlips samples to try. No other compensation was received and all opinions are my own.

This giveaway is now closed and the winner is #14 AEKZ2

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Stocking Stuffer Weekend: Scunci Hair Accessories Review and Giveaway

I have obnoxiously thick hair. Trying to find anything that will stay put in my hair is a struggle. Scunci has a solution with their New Evolution hair ties, hair bands, and clips.


This great collection utilizes new technology to create hair accessories that won't come out until you take them out!


Have a holiday party where you want to try something fun and festive with your hair but aren't sure you have the styling skill? Try the Scunci Upzing double combs.   They are easy to use, comfortable, and sophisticated.  It has a last hold and can be used to create dozen of styles.




Scunci Upzing and Evolution products are available nationwide at mass market and drug store retailers. And would make a great stocking stuffer!
Giveaway: One of you will win an evolution and upzing product from scunci!

To enter: If your email is not visible in your profile, you must leave it with your comment. Winner will be announced on this post and notified by email and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be selected. Contest closes at 9pm on 12/4. US only.

Entry options: Please leave a separate comment for each entry that you do.
*Tell me another scunci product you would like to try.
*Tell me who you want to win this for.
*Follow Things I Can't Say(GFC, twitter or facebook)- one entry total
*Entered all three of the stocking stuffer giveaways? Conair, Scunci, and Softlips? Leave another comment for an extra entry to win!



I received these products for review. No other compensation was received and all opinions are my own.

This giveaway is now closed and the winner is #51: Batman's Mom.

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Stocking Stuffer Weekend: Conair Hair Brushes Review and Giveaway

Great hairstyles start with a great brush! My boys are forever running away with my hairbrushes for some reason, so I don't mind having extras on hand. And even if you don't have hair brushing-thieving boys in your house, you can still probably use an extra brush or two to put in a stocking!


You can detangle wet and dry hair of all lengths with the Conair Tormaline Ceramic Small Porcupine Round Brush or Conair Gel Grips Cushion Brush. Each helps smooth, style, and straighten hair. The Conair Gel Grips Cushion Brush conforms to the shape of your hand for easy styling and the flexible cushion base prevents hair breakage.


The Conair Tourmaline Ceramic Small Porcupine Round Brush utilizes finely crushed tourmaline a gemstone that naturally releases negative ions, infused into the nylon bristles and ceramic barrel of the brush. The ions tighten the cuticle layer and seal in natural oils reducing static electricity leaving hair shiny and silky. I had a lot of luck using this round brush as I was blowdrying my hair.


Giveaway: One of you will win these two brushes from Conair!

To enter: If your email is not visible in your profile, you must leave it with your comment. Winner will be announced on this post and notified by email and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be selected. Contest closes at 9pm on 12/4. US only.
Entry options: Please leave a separate comment for each entry that you do.
*Like Conair on facebook
*Follow Conair on twitter
*Follow Things I Can't Say(GFC, twitter OR facebook)- one entry total

*Tell me who you want to win this for!
*Entered all three of the stocking stuffer giveaways? Conair, Scunci, and Softlips? Leave another comment for an extra entry to win!

I was sent these hair brushes to review. No other compensation was received. All opinions are my own.

This giveaway is now closed and the winner is #32: It's Always Something Around Here.

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Friday, November 26, 2010

Blog Friend Feature: Black Friday Edition

Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving yesterday! Or at least got through it okay. With the holiday weekend, I wasn't sure if I should have a Blog Friend Feature today. So, I asked the ultimate authority on anything important: Twitter. And  I even asked if there was anyone who would like to be featured today.

Kimberly AKA Not Blessed Mama replied that she wanted to. Love people who just jump right in like that. And her post today is very timely since it's about Black Friday. Some of you might already be back from hours of shopping by the time this posts early in the morning since the stores are open insanely early.

Autumn- it’s such a magical time of year. Thanksgiving. Sharing a special meal with loved ones. Family traditions. The beginning of the holiday season. And, what I hold dearest to my heart-

BLACK FRIDAY!


My name is Not Blessed Mama, and I am an addict. I am hopelessly, hopelessly addicted to bargain shopping. Whenever I walk into a store, my eyes immediately begin sweeping the aisles searching for those telltale orange clearance stickers and 75% off signs. So to have a whole day devoted to sales of epic proportions- be still, my beating heart! It is the one day a year I allow myself to be a rampant consumer without remorse- and I full well take advantage of it!


Now, before you go thinking I am one of those crazy nutcases- well, I’m not (really). Pushing, shoving, grabbing, fighting- all big no-no’s in my book. While I do love a good bargain, I am definitely not willing to fight someone over a Furby (’member those?) or trample someone for a Nerf gun. Last year I did yell at some “gentlemen”, though- as they were shoving an older man to get to some video games. I mean, video games or breaking some old guys bones? It’s obvious what the choice would be!


I am a serious shopper though. I begin planning my trip as soon as the ads start leaking. With three adorable (greedy) Spawn, my Christmas list is a mile long. I have to compare prices, compare opening times, see who is price matching and see how good the bargains actually are. Because come on now Target, if I am dragging my butt out of bed at 3 am, this had better be a darn good price.


Come Thanksgiving day, I stuff my face with turkey and get those ads in my hot little hands. Which is rather unnecessary, because at this point I have them memorized- but I may need to show them to the clerk to price match. Before I go to bed , I stay up late to see what deals will go live on-line. You knew Black Friday went on in the virtual world too, right? (*Note: There is that Cyber Monday nonsense, but that’s what it is- nonsense.) After anxiously refreshing websites over and over to see what I can get on-line, I grab a couple hours of sleep and wake in the wee hours of the morning. Grab an apple, jump in the car and I’m off!


Having a friend tag along is definitely a major bonus. Having a friend who doesn’t have much shopping to do tag along- priceless! Last year I had a side-kick helping me out. I was so grateful, I offered to buy her a bottle of wine from a nearby display as a token of my undying gratitude and appreciation. Do you have any idea how mortifying it is to get turned down when you try and buy a bottle of wine at Wal-Mart at 5:50 am? Extremely, let me tell you. Apparently you can’t buy alcohol before 6 am here- pshaw.


I wish I could give you some advice for what to do when you are in the store shopping, but pretty much all I can say is eat or be eaten. Seriously! Watch your back, move fast and get in and out as quickly as possible- after all, the next store is waiting!


To my fellow Black Friday lovers out there, I hope you had great luck this year and snagged everything you were looking for, while avoiding bodily harm. And to the newbies, I hope I have given you a little encouragement to check out the sales. Happy Hunting!

I'm a little scared of Black Friday shopping. We'll see if I head out or not. Please leave Not Blessed Mama some comment love here and go follow her blog if you don't already!

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Thursday, November 25, 2010

My Boys Take Over My Blog

Hope you are having a wonderful Thanksgiving!

I'm joining in with Mama Kat today for Writer's Workshop. One of the choices was to interview your kids about Thanksgiving so I'm turning my blog over to my boys.


I asked Monkey(5) why we have Thanksgiving.
Because the Pilgrims and Indians ate together. They helped each other.


He then launched into a song:
Pilgrims and Indians ate together on Thanksgiving DAAAAAAAAYYYYY.


And when I laughed, he started dancing around and singing a different song:
Thanksgiving Day is coming so Mr. Turkey said! The pumpkin hears the turkey. I'm eating so much. They'll mix me up with spice and sugar and cut off my head and I'll be a pumpkin pie.


Um, okay, kid. Moving on to Bear(4).


What do we do on Thanksgiving?
We go to (cousin)'s house for a Thanksgiving FEAST! And we wear a hat.


What are you thankful for, Bear?
Cupcakes, Mommy, Daddy, Monkey, Cub, all the people. And cupcakes.  


He's got his priorities straight.


So, back to Monkey, what are you thankful for?
TV.

Anything else?
No.


Hmmm. Santa heard that.

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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Pour Your Heart Out: A Glass That's Half-full

If you need more info about Pour Your Heart Out, see THIS post.

But, really, it's anything that YOU consider pouring your heart out.

Be sure to check out some of the links- you will find some amazing stories out there.
Again, just a brief reminder that everyone linking is pouring their hearts out and we should all be respectful in our comments. ;)



 


We are into the holiday season now. Thankgiving, Christmas, New Year's. It all goes so quickly.


Throw a birthday in there for one of my boys, one of my brothers, my mil, plus a visit from parents and  my sil being due with a baby, and it's a crazy time.


Holidays usually equal family time. And... y'all, mine could be its own reality freak show with all the drama that goes on.


But, I've decided that today, I'm going to look for what I love in my family instead of what drives me crazy. In honor of Thanksgiving, I'm going to be a glass half-full kind of a girl.


I'm thankful that my older brother B has grown into a mature and caring man. He loves his wife and child (and baby on the way) with a passion that I rarely see in anyone. And I'm eternally grateful that he married a woman that I am proud to call my sister.


I'm thankful for my younger brother A, who is now a newlywed. He is the most level-headed person I know...until you tick him off. And when he's mad or *I*  am mad or hurt or upset in anyway, there is no one else that I'd rather have in my corner. He'd take on the world for those he loves. And he married well, too.

I was trying not to step on my sil's train or fall off the steps in my heels and break something, so yeah, it's a little bit of a weird pose, but the only one of my two brothers and me(and obviously my brother's wife) from when we were together for the wedding in October.


I'm thankful that I have brothers whom I can feel close to, even though I no longer live near them. I miss them, but I love that we are all happily married and building our families. And that, despite whatever craziness is around us, us kids stick together.


I'm going to try to remember all this during the craziness of the holidays. And if I can't, well, I'll take that half-full glass and DRINK it. And then pour another.

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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

10 Rules for the Playground: For Parents

1. Remember that you are here for the kids to play. Fussing at them about getting dirty is pretty silly, given where you brought them. If you think it's the end of the world for them to get a little dirty in whatever you brought them to the park in, you either need to chill out or leave the park and come back another day, in another outfit.


2. If it's possible for a child to climb up on something and jump off, he will probably attempt it(this one might be just for boy moms, I'm not sure). So, keep your eye out....even if you decide you will let him try, just don't be surprised that it is attempted.


3. If you bring snacks and drinks to the playground, do not leave them lying around after your child wonders off to play again. A random toddler will view an open juice box and cookies sitting out on a picnic table as an open invitation for his own personal snack time. Do the other mamas a favor and put all of that away so that they don't have to spend all their time keeping their children away from the open snacks.


4. If you must bring your dog to the playground, that dog is your responsibility. It is not okay to tie said dog to one of the few park benches available and then go to the other side of the playground. Someone might want to actually be able to sit down. And now you've forced other moms to be the ones to stand guard over your dog to keep their children from playing with him.


5. It is expected that if you are near a child who is about to fall you should step in and catch them instead of letting them tumble to the ground at your feet. HOWEVER, that's not the rule here. The rule here is that if you see a mom standing near her child and SHE is not concerned enough to step in to stop her child from doing whatever he is doing, then you shouldn't either. Maybe you wouldn't let your 2 year-old climb up the rock wall, but maybe the 2 year-old in question is perfectly capable of this. If mom is within catching distance, it is not your problem.


6. No comments about other people's children. Unless they actually do something to harm yours, remember that no child is perfect. Also remember that they are there to play, so if you are loudly complaining about a child making noise or running around...um, they're outside at a playground- they need to get that all out somewhere.


7. Yes, I know it's tempting to talk on your phone, check your blog comments, or even read a book when you are on the playground- especially if it is a fenced-in playground and you are sitting right beside the only exit...but remember that you do need to actually watch your kids. That also helps with the snide comments about your kids mentioned in #6. But, if you aren't paying attention to your kids, you should expect snide comments about you.


8. Do not bring sick children to the playground. They might be driving you crazy at home, but that is no excuse for bringing them out to share their germs.


9. Be nice to the other mamas. If you expect your kids to play nice, you better play nice, too. Otherwise, we might call you a motherbitch.


10. Just like kids don't follow all the rules all the time....us mamas probably won't either. And sometimes, having your children run around a fenced-in area is such a relief that we forget about everything else.

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Monday, November 22, 2010

My Story: The Engagement

How to describe an engaement that happened so long ago.


Because of course that is what happened after he came back from Greece and she went to see him.


More than ten years later, she can remember where they ate dinner: the exact table where they sat.  She never sat at that table again, though she's been back to that restaurant many times.


She remembers how nervous he was the whole time. His leg constantly bouncing up and down. The way he kept staring at her.


The movie they saw after dinner, one she's seen countless times since and never once without remembering that day.


The way he kept shifting in his chair and squeezing her hand.


The abrupt way that he said goodbye to their friends afterward, insisting that they needed to go.


The way that she worried that something was wrong since it was still early and he was so desperate to leave.


Figuring he was just tired and wanted to go back to their hotel, she was confused when he insisted on stopping at store and looking around, all the time checking his watch. A store that now sits abandoned, weeds growing in the parking lot.


The way that he suddenly announced that they needed to go back to their room right then. In a hotel that has since changed names and been remodeled to the point of being unrecognizable except for its location.


The way that he insisted she go up the steps first and enter the room first when he was the one who usually led the way.


How he opened the door for her and she saw a room lit by countless candles and a floor strewn with rose petals.


The way she didn't know what to say, but he nodded at her to enter.


A path of rose petals followed to a huge bouquet of roses on the window seat.


Turning around to find that he was down on one knee with a ring in his hand. "Marry me."


The tears that she shed almost instantly, the way that she screamed "Yes!"


The kiss. The first kiss as an engaged couple.


How to explain it all, more than ten years after it happened.


How to capture the moment. How to explain that engagement when she doesn't wear that ring on her finger now.


Ten years later, how to explain it.


This is the best that she can do.



If you missed any of the story of my past, where yes, I talk about myself in the third person, you can check out these links to get caught up:
10 Days After the Hurricane
Was It a Big Mistake?
A Romance Grows
And Then He Left Her
She Moves for Him
The Waiting Game

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Sunday, November 21, 2010

"My Family Christmas Book and Memories" Giveaway

This weekend, I posted a review of "My Family Christmas Book and Memories." It is a book full of "Advent and Christmas prayers and activities to build family traditions centered on Jesus Christ."  If you would like to learn more about it, you can see my review HERE




Now you have a chance to win your own copy! Three ways to win. Leave a separate comment for each thing that you do.

1) Tell me why you would like to have "My Family Christmas Book and Memories"


2) Visit the website http://www.myfamilychristmasbook.com/. and leave a comment telling me which 2 Chapters of the book you think will be your favorite ones.

3) Paste a link of my review http://bit.ly/8ZWNAQ on your facebook page and notify me about it by tagging me in your post. Facebook name: Shell Jeanette or Things I Can't Say Please leave a comment here telling me that you did this.
 
 
Winner will be selected by random drawing at 9pm EST on Thanksgiving. My Family Christmas Book is providing the book for giveaway and selected the entry options. US only. If your email is not in your profile, please leave it with your comment so I can contact you if you win.

This giveaway is now closed and the winner is #10: Lisa.

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Cradle Rock CDs Review and Giveaway

I remember those days when I was up in the middle of the night, rocking a baby. Desperately trying to get the baby to go to sleep. Lights dimmed, rocking back and forth, and lullabies playing in the background.


Most of those lullabies, I had no clue what they were. Nothing that I knew, not even after countless replayings. Or nothing that really appealed to me.


Enter the Cradle Rock lullabies. Music that takes into consideration not only the child but the parent, too! They are made to appeal to a variety of music lovers' taste, based on familiar songs that we already love as adults. The melodic structure and tempo of each song stays true to the original but each song is now a lullaby.


I was sent Cradle Rock: Country (Kenny Chesney's "No Shoes, No Diaper, Might Be  Problem), Cradle Rock Pop (Michael Jackson's "Thrillaby"), and another Cradle Rock: Country (Johnny Cash's "I Crawl the Line") to review. There are more albums in production, including U2’s “The Joshua Sleep Tree,” Black Eyed Peas’ “Sleep-pea Hits” as well as lullaby albums inspired by Nickelback, Carrie Underwood and The Eagles to name a few.

Being a Kenny Chesney fan, I opened that cd first. I wasn't quite sure what to expect. After all, one of the songs on the cd is "Beer in Mexico." I couldn't imagine singing "I just sit right here and have another beer in Mexico" to my child. Think it, absolutely, but not sing it.


Silly me. There are no words, just a lullaby tune that sounds like the song I know and love. I think these cds make for lullaby music that a parent can actually enjoy while their child is listening to it. And maybe make you smile as you hear the peaceful music in the background but start singing along to yourself, "Cause this is thriller, thriller night!"


Giveaway: One of you will win the Cradle Rock cd of your choice!


To enter: If your email is not visible in your profile, you must leave it with your comment. Winner will be announced on this post and will be emailed. Winner will have 48 hours to respond to giveaway notification or a new winner will be selected. Open to US and Canada. Contest will close at 9pm EST 11/28.


Mandatory entry: Visit Cradle Rock and tell me which cd you would choose if you win.


Additional entries: Must leave a separate comment for each entry.

*Follow @treetoprecords on twitter and leave twitter name

*Like Treetop Records on facebook and leave username

*Follow Things I Can't Say GFC

*Subscribe to Things I Can't Say email subscription(must activate) and leave your email

*Like Things I Can't Say on facebook(you can do this in my sidebar) and leave your username

*Follow shellthings on twitter and leave your twitter name

*Tweet this giveaway: Lullabies babies AND parents will like. @TreetopRecords #giveaway @shellthings http://bit.ly/9R5lTG

*Grab my NEW button. +2 entries, leave 2 comments

*Enter any of my active giveaways(listed in my sidebar- +1 entry per giveaway)



This post was written for Family Review Network & Cradle Rock who provided the complimentary product for review and giveaway in exchange for my honest opinions.


This giveaway is now closed and the winner is #59 Raven in a Blue Room.

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Auntie Anne's At-Home Baking Kit Review

Pretzels are my favorite treat to get when I'm out shopping at the mall. I absolutely cannot resist Auntie Anne's pretzels. My addiction is made worse by the fact that my local mall does not have one and I can only taste that warm deliciousness if I go to the mall an hour away from my house. This is what happens when you live in the middle of nowhere.


So, having this box arrive on my doorstep had my mouth watering:



I wasn't alone. My boys immediately started chanting "Pretzels! Pretzels! Pretzels!" I thought there was going to be a riot on my hands when I told them that it was a kit to make pretzels and even if they managed to grab the box out of my hands, they weren't going to find pretzels inside.


Key ingredients in the kit are a yeast packet, special at-home baking Auntie Anne’s dough mix, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon sugar.


I'm often disappointed by baking/cooking kits because they never seem to taste as good as what you would get if you bought it fresh. But, I thought I'd give it a try.


In addition to making pretzels with their baking kits, there are a variety of other recipes that you can make. Monkey bread, pretzel stuffing, apple dumplings, and deep dish pizza. Mmmm, all sounded delicious!


I decided to make a dessert pizza. There was an option to either use all of the dough to make a thick crust or half for a thin crust. I went with a thin crust. The pizza I made had cream cheese and marshmallow fluff "sauce" and was topped with raspberries and blackberries. Absolutely heavenly!


With the other half, I could have made another dessert pizza, perhaps with chocolate sauce and marshmellows and nuts for a rocky road pie. Or a thin crust cheese pizza. However, I think my boys would have been disappointed if I hadn't made at least some pretzels.


My boys had a blast shaping their own pretzels. And yes, they are every bit as good as the ones you buy from Auntie Anne's stores. No disappointment here!


Click HERE to see where you can buy Auntie Anne's At-Home Baking Kit.


I was sent an Auntie Anne's At-Home Baking Kit to facilitate this review. My opinions and my carb-addiction are my own.

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Saturday, November 20, 2010

My Family Christmas Book and Memories Review

Can you believe it's almost Thanksgiving? That means Christmas is right around the corner.


It's so easy to get caught up in all the holiday activities and shopping that we can forget about the real reason that we are celebrating.


My Family Christmas Book and Memories is a book full of "Advent and Christmas prayers and activities to build family traditions centered on Jesus Christ."


I admit that I sometimes don't give Advent a whole lot of thought, but the meanings and special prayers are included in this book, making it easy to keep a Christ-centered holiday season.


There are also Christmas craft and recipe ideas, plus space for you to write in your own. There's also a section for planning. I love that because there always seems to be an idea I'll get every year after seeing what someone else does or reading an article and I'll think "Oh, we should do that next year!" and then I forget. But, this way, all of that information is together in one book.


I'd recommend this for any family who is looking to be organized and intentional about celebrating Jesus this holiday season. It is available for purchase for $23.90.


This post was written for Family Review Network & My Family Christmas Book & Memories who provided the complimentary product for review in exchange for my honest opinions.

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My Blissdom Sponsor: LeadCheck

You may have heard me squeal across twitter on Monday afternoon that I was going to the Blissdom conference and that I had a sponsor.  I couldn't help it- I was so excited!


Now, I'd like to introduce you to my sponsor: LeadCheck® .


They contacted me after I posted about my middle son's lead poisoning. They offered to send me some of their LeadCheck®  Swabs so that I could test to make sure that we didn't have anything in our home now that has lead.


Like most of you, all I used to know about lead poisoning is that "it's bad." And that it could come from old paint. Or I'd heard stories about toys containing lead. But, I had no idea of just how much damage it could do to a child.


Plus, hey, if my child isn't eating old paint chips, he's safe, right? Wrong. What I learned is that kids can touch surfaces that contain lead... and then if they later put their hands to their mouths with the lead still on them, that's a way for them to get the lead into their systems. And ironically enough, lead is very sweet, which appeals to kids.


After encountering children with illnesses related to lead-poisoning, Dr. Marcia Stone created LeadCheck® Swabs, allowing for instant-read lead-detection and the prevention of lead contamination. Over the years, Dr. Stone has contributed to the prevention of lead poisoning in children and adults through early lead detection.  The EPA recognizes that LeadCheck® test kit can reliably determine that regulated lead-based paint is not present.


Some of the most common places that lead is found are:
*Paint
*Ceramics
*Vinyl lunch boxes
*Mini-blinds
*Bathtubs (this includes older tubs and the glaze used on some newer tubs)
*Solder


Believe me when I tell you that lead poisoning is not something that you ever want your child to go through. Lead may cause a range of health effects, from behavioral problems and learning disabilities, to seizures and death. Until we found out that my son had lead poisoning, Autism and Sensory Processing Disorder were considered. We do not know what the long term effects will be.  I wouldn't wish this on anyone.


I'm thrilled that LeadCheck ® exists and am excited about my partnership with them so that I can tell other moms about their products so that you can keep your children safe. Their products are very easy to use.




I have a giveaway of the swabs going on right now that ends tonight, if you are interested in trying these out. You can enter HERE.


Just this week, lead was found in reusable bags from Winn-Dixie, Publix, Sweetbay, Walmart, and Target.   You can follow LeadCheck's blog, like them on facebook, and follow them on twitter to stay up-to-date on the latest news about lead.


LeadCheck is sponsoring me to Blissdom in exchange for sharing information about them with you. But, as the mom of a child with lead poisoning, I'd want to share this anyway. Shhh, don't tell them that.

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Friday, November 19, 2010

Blog Friend Feature: You Might be a Motherbitch

I'm SO excited for you to meet this week's BFF. We have followed each other's blogs almost since the beginning and eventually figured out that we have so much in common that we might as well be sisters. I even refer to her as my bloggy sis.


The Mommyologist is on a mission to bring Mom Sexy back. She has such an honest voice and makes me laugh! She's also earned some really fabulous honors, too. If you aren't reading her already, you are seriously missing out.  I never miss a single post of hers!



We all know how awesome Shell is...but did you know that besides being a total sweetheart, an awesome blogger, and a great friend, she is also an inventor? That's right...Shell has invented this great little word that I've used in a sentence on more than one occasion:


"Motherbitch"


Shell's definition of motherbitch is: what the mean girls of junior high turn into when they age and procreate.


In honor of rising above motherbitches everywhere, I've written a short list of what constitutes being labeled as a motherbitch. Enjoy.




You Might Be A Motherbitch...


- If my kid picks his nose and hands me a booger and I don't even flinch for one second and you look at the two of us with disgust...you might be a motherbitch.


- If your house is like a freakin' museum and you invite my 4-year old over for a playdate and he accidentally knocks over some shitty looking china figurine that you've conveniently placed on an end table and you get pissed when he knocks it over even though he wouldn't have knocked it over if you'd been smart enough to put it somewhere a bit higher...you might be a motherbitch.


- If you are super duper sweet to a mom friend's face and then do nothing but talk shit about her once she walks away...you might be a motherbitch.


- If you criticize another mother for her decision to stay at home with her kids, go to work, work from home, work part-time away from home, etc...you might be a motherbitch.


- If a new mother vents to you about how exhausted and overwhelmed she is with her newborn and you look her her with a snarky smile and say, "Oh, we never had that problem with our little Suzy Freakin' Sunshine."...you might be a motherbitch.


- If you get embarrassed talking about poop with other moms, when everyone knows that poop is the universal mom-uniter...you might be a motherbitch.


- If one of your friends bends down to tie her kid's shoe and in the process exposes her butt crack and thong hanging out of her low rise jeans and you don't either step in front of her so no one will see or tell her to get up right away...you might be a motherbitch.


- If you don't admit that your life has changed...like not even one little bit, after having a child, you are definitely a motherbitch.


A huge thanks to Shell for giving me permission to use her word for this post. Now, just to show you that I'm not a motherbitch, I'm going to go wipe my son's ass since he's yelling at me from the bathroom as I finish writing this.
LOVE it!!! Please leave the Mommyologist some comment love here and then go follow her FABULOUS blog if you don't already!

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Thursday, November 18, 2010

Would You Have Smiled?

Literal are the young.
Expressions they do not get.


Hyperbole, similes, metaphor
Are lost in preschool land.


Misunderstandings do occur
If this should be forgotten.


All this we were reminded
When middle son his pants did drop


After Daddy remarked
to our skinny boy
"You have no butt at all."


Turning around,
His naked tush
Our son did flash.


"See? I do have a butt!"
As Daddy was proven wrong.


Mommy hid her smile
As the thought occurred
A blog post she now has!




Linking up with Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop and the prompt: Write a poem about a time someone made you smile. Okay, so I'm not a poet, but this definitely made me smile! And laugh until I almost cried.


Pssst, did you get a chance to check out any of the Pour Your Heart Out links yesterday? Some great stories there!

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Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Pour Your Heart Out: Feeling Out of Place

If you need more info about Pour Your Heart Out, see THIS post.

But, really, it's anything that YOU consider pouring your heart out.

Be sure to check out some of the links- you will find some amazing stories out there.
Again, just a brief reminder that everyone linking is pouring their hearts out and we should all be respectful in our comments. ;)




 



Do you ever feel completely out of place?


On Saturday, my mil watched our three boys from the afternoon until the following morning. So, Hubs and I had a big chunk of kid-free time.


We did some window-shopping and then went to a high school play-off soccer game. Felt like back when we were dating!


And then, we went to party at the house of a friend of his.


Here is where I felt like a big out-of-place old loser.


I was the only female over 30. Probably the only one over 25, but I'm trying to make myself feel better.


The only mom.


The only female not in skinny jeans or jeggings, paired with a stylish top and boots.


No drinking for me because I never, ever drink  ha, I know you won't believe that because someone had to drive.


And so, I also was not joining in with the beer pong tournaments or the dancing. Or the conversations that were full of slurred nonsensical words and screaming to be heard over the music.


I kept thinking that we could never get away with a party like this at our house, with people hanging out in the garage and driveway, with music blasting. We're in a quiet family neighborhood. People would complain about the noise.


So, I felt out of place. After all, everyone else around me was having fun, and what was I doing? I probably stuck out like a giant loser.


But, I quickly shook that off. Not a loser, just different.


I might not be dressed like the other girls- but none of them had spent the afternoon at the Bounce House with their kids. Plus, it was cold and I wasn't trying to impress anyone.


I wasn't loud and flirty. Like I would have been in my early twenties. But, I'm married. I know who I'm going home with.


Even though I was probably viewed as boring, I didn't have to let that get to me.


It just wasn't my scene. When I was younger, I probably would have let this all get to me, to feel some sort of "peer pressure" to fit in. But, at this stage in my life, that does affect me any more.


I CAN have fun. I've been known to  drink, dance, play games, talk too loud, and laugh a lot, too.  When I want.


It made me miss MY friends. Where I might sometimes even been viewed as the loud one, the one suggesting what we do next, the one doing some sort of crazy dance even though she can't dance, the one talking silly nonsense, the one with the never-empty glass.


But, that night wasn't the right night for me. After all, someone had to get up in the morning and go pick up our kids.


Maybe the next time we are around that group of people, I will fit in more. Or maybe I'll still feel out of place. But, I'm okay with that, as long as in whatever I do, I make my own choices.


At this point in my life, the thought of peer pressure or trying to conform feels more than just a little bit silly.


Being in this situation, it was easy to see and roll my eyes at trying to fit in just for the sake of not feeling out of place. But, then I realized that it needs to extend to other areas of my life. Like whether or not I fit in with the other moms at my son's preschool. And suddenly, it's not as clear-cut.


Do you ever feel pressure to do something or act a certain way to fit in?

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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Webkinz Jr. Giveaway: 2 Winners

My four and five year-olds took over my computer yesterday afternoon.


Armed with their Webkinz Jrs™, they are entertained for hours. They are having fun AND learning. I reviewed these in the past. If you want more info on why they are a great toy, you can check out my review.


But, basically, they are a cute stuffed animal that come with a code that allow your children to play games online. The junior edition of these are appropriate for ages 3-6 and have a suggested retail value of $24.99 each.

There was such great response to the last giveaway that I hosted for Webkinz Jr.™, that I am hosting another one! Just in time for Christmas, too!


TWO of you will win the Webkinz Jr.™ of your choice!


To enter: If your email is not visible in your profile, you must leave it with your comment. Winner will be announced on this post and will be emailed. Winner will have 48 hours to respond to giveaway notification or a new winner will be selected. Open to US and Canada. Contest will close at 9pm EST 11/23.


First entry: Tell me who you want to win this for!

Extra entries: Leave a separate comment for each entry.

*Visit the Webkinz Jr.™ store and tell me which animal you would choose.

*Follow Webkinz Jr.™ on twitter: @WebkinzJr and leave your twitter name

*Like Webkinz Jr.™ on facebook and leave your username

*Follow Things I Can't Say GFC

*Subscribe to Things I Can't Say email subscription(must activate) and leave your email

*Like Things I Can't Say on facebook(you can do this in my sidebar) and leave your username

*Follow shellthings on twitter and leave your twitter name

*Tweet this giveaway- one tweet per day, leave a comment with the link to your tweet for each time that you tweet: Great Christmas present for your 3-6 y/o! @WebkinzJr #giveaway 2 winners @shellthings http://bit.ly/9TpZQJ

*Grab my NEW button. +2 entries, leave 2 comments

*Enter any of my active giveaways(listed in my sidebar- +1 entry per giveaway)


I am being sent another Webkinz Jr for hosting this giveaway. But, my boys' love for them is honest.

This giveaway is now closed. The winners are #23 Evonne and #255 The Random Blogette.

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Monday, November 15, 2010

The Waiting Game

She thought that she could have fun waiting for him to come back.


After all, she had been gone away from home for a year. And hadn't seen family and friends much. Now, she was there and she could spend time with them.


It would help pass the time while she waited for him to get back from Greece. He did send a few letters. But, there were no calls. She had known that there wouldn't be.


Friends would be a good distraction.


Except that they all thought she was crazy.


She had only known him for seven months. And for two of those, he had been gone. How much could they really know each other?


This seemed like a drastic step.


To quit her job and pack up and move for him. To a place where she'd never been. And not one that she'd ever thought she would move to.


It was a lot.


Her friends and family questioned. Poking and prodding and trying to get her to admit that this was crazy.


But, they didn't get it. They didn't know just how much she was in love. How much he loved her.


Their love was the one thing in her life she was sure of. It made her feel confident. Strong. Beautiful. Important.


Like nothing else mattered, as long as they would be together.


It might have been "only" seven months since that first night, but she'd never been more sure of anything in her life.


The doubters...they just didn't get it. Maybe they had never been this in love. Even those who were in relationships and claimed to know...there was no way that they were in love like this or they would understand her choices.


They were the crazy ones, to be in relationships where their love wasn't so all-consuming. They were settling.


She was the one who was smart. Who had held out for true love and found it.


And was doing everything she could to make their relationship work.


So, when she heard all their doubts, none of them caused her to doubt him.


They didn't know him, didn't know how much he loved her.


But, she did doubt them. Friends and family who didn't get it. Who were trying to bring her down. Who looked down on her for changing her life to be with the one she loved.


When you love that much, there is no way that you will let anything stand in your way.


He was scheduled to return the following week.



If you missed any of the story of my past, where yes, I talk about myself in the third person, you can check out these links to get caught up:
10 Days After the Hurricane
Was It a Big Mistake?
A Romance Grows
And Then He Left Her
She Moves for Him

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Sunday, November 14, 2010

It's Getting Colder: Jackets from Cookie's, The Kids Dept. Store

Have you bought winter jackets for your children yet?


This is a not-sponsored post about the ones available at Cookie's, the Kids Department Store. They have such great deals on children's clothing and toys and I wanted to blog about them anyway.


My 5 year-old picked out this  U.S. Polo Assn. “Heritage” Insulated Jacket as his jacket for this year. ($36.99)

They have a wide selection of jackets: London Fog, French Toast, Osh Kosh, and The North Face being some of the brand names they have available.


You can check them out on facebook, too, where they keep you up-to-date with sales and new products.


Full disclosure: I have worked with Cookie's in the past and my son won this jacket in a back-to-school photo contest. However, I was under no obligation to blog about them. I simply wanted to make sure you were aware of them as you are doing your Christmas shopping!

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PetCakes: Adorably Sweet Plush Pets Review and Giveaway

Introducing a new collectible plush pet line that will be a sweet treat for children ages 3 & up! What could be cuter than stuffed animals that come with a "frosting" hat and nestled in their own cupcake wrappers?


The PetCakes line debuted this fall with four collectible puppies.  More than six additional generations will begin debuting in 2011featuring new puppies, kittens, bears, rabbits, raccoons, and other furry friends.


I was sent the first four PetCakes in series one for review.



My boys' favorite is Blueberry Buddy who is a Shar Pei who acts tough for his size but is a loving pushover who is as sweet as the blueberry frosting on his head.



PetCakes are sold individually and have a suggested retail price of $13.99. They are available at http://www.toysrus.com/ (online only, not in stores), http://www.etoys.com/, http://www.amazon.com/, and specialty stores.


What a cute Christmas present these would make! Or birthday present/favor, or as a special surprise.


Giveaway: One of you will win TWO PetCakes.


To enter: If your email is not visible in your profile, you must leave it with your comment. Winner will be announced on this post and will be emailed. Winner will have 48 hours to respond to giveaway notification or a new winner will be selected. US only. Contest will close at 9pm EST 11/21.


Mandatory Entry: Tell me who you want to win these for.


Additional Entries: Please leave a separate comment for each entry.
*Follow Things I Can't Say on GFC

*Like Things I Can't Say on facebook(you can do this in my sidebar)

*Grab my NEW button +2 entries, leave 2 comments with a link to where I can find it

*Follow shellthings on twitter

*Tweet this giveaway: one tweet per day, leave link to your tweet each time you tweet: #Win 2 adorable plush PetCakes from @shellthings #giveaway http://bit.ly/bc6iVW

*Enter any of my active giveaways (listed in my sidebar- +1 entry for each giveaway entered)

I was sent the line of PetCakes in exchange for my honest review.


This giveaway is now closed and the winner is #250: Kathy Pease.

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Saturday, November 13, 2010

Keep Our Kids Safe: LeadCheck Review and Giveaway

When I poured my heart out to you about my son's lead poisoning, many of you had questions about how you can keep your kids safe. It's something all moms know that we want to avoid for our kids, but most don't realize just how serious it can be.


LeadCheck contacted me last week and offered to send me some of their LeadCheck® Swabs. The owner of the company, Dr. Marcia Stone, created LeadCheck® Swabs 23 years ago after learning of children suffering from lead poisoning from exposure in their own homes. She combined years of scientific knowledge and experience to create an instant read lead detection tool to help protect families.  I was very impressed by them: they read my post on a Wednesday and UPS was dropping off a package for me on Friday.


Though we have moved away from the source of my son's lead poisoning, I'm still very concerned about any other possible sources of lead. I can't begin to describe the feeling of panic that I have that we may have brought something with us that has been contaminated.

From their site: LeadCheck® Swabs are non-hazardous and provide a rapid, sensitive and specific test for leachable lead on any surface. When lead is detected, LeadCheck® Swabs and/or the surface being tested turns pink or red on contact, depending on the concentration of lead present. In the vast majority of test situations results are obtained in less than 30 seconds. When detecting low levels of lead, or lead chromate containing pigments, results may take longer to develop. Each kit contains test confirmation cards to verify individual test results.



They were very easy to use. So far, nothing that I have tested has had any lead. What a relief! After all that we have gone through with my son's lead poisoning, it is so comforting to know that this product exists. And I will continue to test more items in our home until I feel reassured that we are completely lead-free.


There is a misconception that kids will only get lead poisoning from old paint or certain toys from China, but that's not always the case. If you follow LeadCheck's blog or twitter or facebook, you can stay on top of the latest information and warnings.  Who would have ever thought that some bounce houses would be a potential threat?


Because lead poisoning is unfortunately something that is a part of my family's life, I will be blogging more about it, because I want to make sure that moms realize just how dangerous it can be.  Lead poisoning is preventable and not something that you ever want your child to have to go through.


But, for now, I wanted to make you aware that LeadCheck® Swabs exist. You can check out where to buy them AND they are offering two of my readers some of their product.


To enter: If your email is not visible in your profile, you must leave it with your comment. Mandatory entry must be completed for additional entries to count. Giveaway will end at 9pm EST on Saturday, November 20th. Winners will be selected by random.org, announced on this post, and notified by email. Winners will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be selected. US only, please.


Mandatory entry: Visit the LeadCheck blog and tell me something that you learned.


Additional entries: Leave a separate comment for each entry.
*Follow LeadCheck on twitter
*Like LeadCheck on facebook
*Follow shellthings on twitter
*Tweet this giveaway(leave link each time you tweet/may tweet once per day): Keep your kids safe from lead poisoning with the help of @LeadCheck Swabs. #Giveaway from @shellthings http://bit.ly/d0E0WZ


I was sent LeadCheck® Swabs before writing this review. Regardless, I would be singing their praises because I think it's such an important thing that they are doing.

This giveaway is now closed. The winners are #2 Oka and #63 Raven in a Blue Room.

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Friday, November 12, 2010

Blog Friend Feature: Like Chatting With A Close Friend

You know when you are sitting down and chatting with a close girlfriend, you talk about a little of this and a little of that? It's rarely the same topics, but whatever it is, you love chatting with her? That's what this week's Blog Friend Feature's blog is like!


Meet Jayme of The Random Blogette!


I am still in shock and feel so honored that Shell asked me to be the Blog Friend Feature today. I may or may not have almost started crying when I read her e-mail asking me to be the BFF for today. I don't exactly remember when or how I found Shell, but I do remember the first time that she replied to one of my comments. It made me feel so special! Now I feel even more awesome because I am actually posting on HER blog! I think that deserves some Jazz Hands!


So since the name of this blog is " Things I Can't Say", I may as well talk about something that is hard for me to admit. It's not exactly something that I can't say, it is more like something that I do not like to admit.


Ok, here it is...I never wanted to have kids. There I said it! Phew! No really, I never did. I know that those of you who have read my blog before find it hard to believe, but it is true. I was way too wrapped up in myself to even imagine taking care of children.


When I was younger I would always say how I was never going to settle down and get married and have kids because life was too much fun. I didn't want to slow down at all. Unfortunately, I ended up getting into a lot of trouble..leaving college before I graduated and going into a deep depression because of everything. But you know how some people say that once you find your "soul mate" that everything will just feel right? (Or something like that...I am not good at remembering quotes from all of the partying that I used to do.) Well once I met my hubs, I just knew that I would be ok and that I wanted to have a family with him.


Lucky for me (or not lucky) he came with a kid. Instant family. Well, not exactly instant but you can read more about that here. As soon as we got married I wanted a baby and we both agreed. Well lucky us, we got pregnant on the first try. I had no idea. I figured that it would take a while. Yeah, not so much. So 8 months later we welcomed a beautiful baby girl.


I really just couldn't imagine my life any other way. I believe that there is a reason for everything and I believe that if my life would've been different early on I may not have met the hubs. I am also so thankful for finding out about blogging. I love being able to tell my story to others. It is nice to have others out there supporting me. I just wish I would've found about blogging sooner!


If you are interested in reading more about the Love Story of me and the hubs, here are the links!

It's A Love Story, Baby Just Say Yes

It's A Love Story Baby Just Say Yes-Part 2

It's A Love Story, Baby Just Say Yes-Part 3

It's A Love Story, Baby Just Say Yes-Part 4

It's A Love Story, Baby Just Say Yes-The Wedding

It's A Love Story, Baby Just Say Yes-The Birth Story

It's A Love Story, Baby Just Say Yes-The Final Chapter

I totally promise that my blog is not all about sunshine and rainbows and wow look at my kids. I am the Random Blogette because my blog is nothing but randomness. I hope that you enjoy it! And thanks Shell for featuring me today. I feel truly honored!


Leave Jayme some comment love here and then go follow her blog!

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Thursday, November 11, 2010

Good-Enough-to-Earn-Honorary-Southerner-Status Sweet Potato Casserole

Where is time going???? 2 weeks until Thanksgiving!


Are you ready for Thanksgiving? Are you hosting this year? Or do you have to bring a dish to wherever you are having Thanksgiving? What is your favorite thing to make?


I know you don't exactly know me as a recipe blogger, but guess what? My kids do actually have to eat. A lot. I don't know where they put it all. 


So, I thought I would share my absolute favorite Thanksgiving side as part of Mama B's Share a Spoon this week.


As you might know, I'm a Yankee married to a Southerner and living in the South. For some reason, no one around here believes that a Yankee can have the best sweet potato casserole EVER, but I do! And after everyone tasted this, they believed me. I think it's actually good enough to earn me honorary Southerner status.


Now, I didn't make up this recipe. But, it's just scribbled on a recipe card in my recipe box and I can't remember where I found it. But, trust me, this is the best recipe! It is almost sweet enough to count as dessert...but you can count it as a side and STILL get to have dessert.


















INGREDIENTS
3 cups cooked and mashed sweet potatoes(I don't really measure, I think I used 4 sweet potatoes)
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup butter
1/3 cup evaporated milk
2 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour


DIRECTIONS
I bake my sweet potatoes the day before Thanksgiving- wrap in foil, bake at 325 for about 3 hours or until they are soft. You might want to put another sheet of foil below them for easy clean up.
Mix together sweet potatoes, white sugar, 1/2 cup butter, milk, eggs, and vanilla. Spread into a greased 9 x 13 inch baking dish.
Mix together 1/3 cup melted butter or margarine, pecans, brown sugar, and flour. Spoon on top of sweet potato mixture.
Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes.


There is never any left. Let me know if you try it!

Do you have a favorite Thanksgiving side recipe? Link up at Share a Spoon!

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