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Upcoming Giveaway Hops: Promote Your Favorite Brands and Boost Your Followers

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Event: "Honor the Earth" Giveaway Hop for Earth Day  
Description: Happy Mothering and DeDa Studios proudly present the “Honor the Earth” Giveaway Hop from April 15th 12:01 AM EST to April 22nd 11:59 PM EST and are accepting signups now.
Prize Minimum: $20  
Sign-up Here
 
Event: Mother's Day Gift Ideas Carnival  
Description: It is a perfect time to find what gifts you would like to give to your mother. Makobi Scribe is proud to present Mother’s Day Gift Ideas Carnival Event from May 10 12:01 PM EST to May 18 at 12:01 PM EST and is accepting signups now.   
Prize Minimum: $25  
Sign-up Here

Wordful Wednesday: Baby Bullet {Bump Update}

I felt I owed you a status update on chocolate chip. Here s/he is! We're now 35 weeks, which means we'll be meeting this big bundle sometime in the next four weeks. Look at the shape of that bump. It looks like a bullet! I am told the shape is an indication of the baby's sex. We'll see! If you have major baby fever, check out my bloggy buddy Alexia's 37 week update at Babies and Bacon!

What I'm Watching on #Netflix

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

This week's picks from Netflix Instant Watch:

TV Show:
Louie. NYC comedian Louis CK is a stand-up comedian and a rascal. He provides hilarious running commentary on everything in his real life from raising daughters to dating and mixes in clips from his act.Then he serves it up on a cold plate of truth. The man pulls no punches about how sad and pathetic he can be and you will laugh..


Movies:
Rabbit Hole.It's refreshing to see Nicole Kidman back to her normal acting self. She must have gotten the memo about laying off the Botox because her face hasn't looked this natural in years. Rabbit Hole is an unflinching look at a marriage cracking under the weight of the loss of a child. Becca (Kidman) and Howie (the always sublime Aaron Eckhart) find comfort in different places and with different people, but have yet to be a comfort to each other.


Toddler Log: 2 Years and 28 Weeks Old

Sunday, February 26, 2012

This was a relatively quiet week. We had a few days of temperatures in the mid-80s and took advantage by going to the park. Otherwise, we just watched movies and played pretend a lot. It's one of Marlie's new favorite games. "Look mommy, I'm a cow! Moo!" Her spirit really shines when she is using her imagination. You never now what my quirky child is going to do next. Some of her oddest habits:
  • She hums when she eats. 
  • She smells everything, including the tissue she used to wipe herself after using the potty.
  • She likes to collect lint.
  • She likes to drink homemade vegetable broth straight.
  • She is easily distracted by talk about robots, dinosaurs (especially T-Rex) and Spider-man. This is the perfect time to comb her hair or brush her teeth.
Nothing surprises me anymore. Remember this picture of her from about five months ago when she gave herself a hair treatment with her yogurt snack? I recall being so riled up by the mess. Now? That's child's play compared to some of the stunts she's pulled lately. We've reached the midpoint of the terrible twos and we're both still standing. I think we're getting the hang of this child/parent thing. 

As a matter of fact, I have found a way to turn her cutesy antics into gold. I submitted this photo to the Messiest Kid Photo Contest at Mom-Blog and it won! Marlie and Me earned a $100 Amazon gift card. We decided that we are going to spend some of it on her little brother or sister. 

Anyone watching the Oscars tonight? I am going to tune-in, but I doubt I'll be able to stay up to see the Best Picture award. This year, I've only seen one movie in that category, The Help. For some reason I have no urge to see the remaining nominated films. Entertainment Weekly has a great column making the case for why Bridesmaids and Rise of the Planet of the Apes (two movie I did see and enjoyed immensely) should have been nominated and how the Academy Awards have lost touch with the movie-going population.

Help Put an End to Malnourishment Around the World

Friday, February 24, 2012

I remember in the 1980s when world hunger was the cause celeb. Famous artists like Michael Jackson packed into a recording studio to sing We Are the World and donated the proceeds to feed starving people. Actors volunteered to become spokespeople for aide organizations and filmed commercials featuring malnourished children in third world countries while pleading into the camera for us to give money.

I can't believe in the 21st century there are still 2 billion people around the world who lack access to the essential nutrients they need for proper physical and cognitive development. I know it's an complicated issue that doesn't have a simple solution. Drought and war can cut off a countries food supply and affect future generations for decades. In fact poor nutrition in mothers and children is the underlying cause of over 35% of all childhood deaths each year.

These sobering statistics are quoted in the media kit for the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) Future Fortified campaign. When I first heard about Future Fortified my initial reaction was, not another charity, how are they going to make a difference where others could not!

But I took the time to read about Future Fortified and quickly realized that they had a truly innovative approach to improving nutrition in developing countries by providing home nutrition packets as well as educating people on their use and the importance of proper nutrition. Mothers can add essential nutrients to food prepared at home to strengthen bones, muscles and immune systems just by sprinkling a nutrition packet on her family's meal.

Future Fortified is a new kind of philanthropy. Funds raised from individuals are leveraged as investments, helping local partners build capacity to increase the supply and availability of home nutrition packets at a price mothers can afford, making this a sustainable strategy for long-term impact.
future fortified infographic

To learn how you can get involved, visit Future Fortified and connect with the campaign on these social media:
Facebook
Twitter

I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf Future Fortified. To thank me for my contribution, Mom Central donated $20 to the Future Fortified campaign.

Join the Green Spring Clean Hop and Gain New Followers!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Happy MotheringSpring Cleaning is a “tradition” in many households, but have you ever thought about all of the chemicals in the household cleaners you use to get that shiny countertop and lemony-fresh bathroom? We challenge you to more “Green” this year with eco-friendly, non-toxic household cleaners that will not only lessen your impact on the environment, but can increase your health by decreasing your exposure to harmful chemicals and increasing your indoor air quality! 

Happy Mothering and SAPsMaMa are excited to bring your the Green Spring Clean Giveaway Hop from March 21st 12:01 AM EST to March 30th 11:59 PM EST and are accepting signups now! Participating in this event is a great opportunity to gain new followers, increase traffic to your blog and network with other bloggers, especially if you enjoy sharing eco-friendly and green products and topics on your blog! 

Read this POST for information on how to join this campaign.

Wordful Wednesday: Mardi Gras

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Our neighborhood held its annual Mardi Gras Parade on Sunday and Marlie's preschool had a float.

walking to the float with friends
Marlie and her daddy getting into character
The Art of Peace Community Float. That's us in the middle. Look at me toss those beads!
 

Libre Tea Mug: Review + Giveaway (US & CAN)

Have I ever told you that I am a the world's biggest tea fan? I swear if I was present at the Boston Tea Party I would have jumped into that harbor and started drinking! That's how serious I am about tea.

Libre Tea thermal glass collectionI inherited my love of tea from my grandmother. She drank a hot cup of tea every morning no matter what the season. I am the same way. I have a collection of teapots and tea infusers, but I have never thought about taking my tea on the go until I was introduced to Libre Tea glasses.

Libre Tea Mug ReviewLibre Tea thermal glasses and mugs have a glass interior, a durable poly exterior and removable tea filter giving you the freedom to brew a single serving of loose leaf tea and enjoy it at home or take it with you. It's also BPA-free, which is a huge bonus for this health- and eco-conscious tea-drinker! I took my Libre Tea mug to the Mardi Gras parade on Sunday. My rooibos blend stayed hot and fresh-tasting the entire time! Portable and Potent! I can't wait to brew some iced teas this summer.

The Libre Tea glasses can be used two ways: put loose leaf tea in the glass compartment, add hot water, replace filter, steep and drink OR add hot water to the glass compartment, replace filter, put loose leaf tea in filter, turn glass upside down to brew, remove filter and drink. I recommend watching this How to Video.

Buy It: The Libre Tea glass'n poly mug retails for $32.50. 

Win It:
Win your own loose leaf tea infuser in the form of a Libre Tea 10 oz Mug!

Please Read How to Enter This Giveaway: you must use the Rafflecopter form below to record your entries.Comments left on this blog post for the required or extra entries don't count unless you record it on the Rafflecopter form. There have been some changes to Rafflecopter! For instance, you now have to login with Facebook or your name/email address. This enables you to see your entries in a giveaway and edit them if needed. Please wait for the form to load, it may take longer to pop up than the rest of the web page. Make sure you have java script enabled and your browser updated. If you encounter an error, refreshing the page usually resolves the problem. If problem persists, please report the issue to Rafflecopter. Login to get started, click "Do It" next to each task to see the instructions, and start collecting your entries!

What Bloggers Are Saying About No More Rack

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Hello, my name is Teresha and I am addicted to online shopping. It's so habit-forming and those daily deal sites are line drug-pushers. They hook you with deep discounts and sales and, before you know it, you are buying a new handbag everyday. 

I am clearly writing with my tongue in my cheek here. I am not addicted to online shopping nor do I think daily deal sites are like drug dealers. I subscribe to several daily shopping deal sites because the sales are so amazing and sometimes irresistible. I like shopping from the comfort of my own home and I like scoring a great deal. 

If you've ever coveted an item that was too expensive and then discovered it for half off or more on a daily deal site, then you've experienced a shopper's high (being facetious, again). Blogger Cheryl Beckham describes the how she found a pair of winter boots for her daughter's birthday at nomoreack.com for 63% off the retail price. All Arkie Armey likens NoMoreRack as having Black Friday sales all year long. I second that emotion. 

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$57 in Prizes for Green is Beautiful Event Feb. 20-28! #greenbeauty

Monday, February 20, 2012

*This is a sticky post. Please scroll down for the newest articles on Marlie and Me*

Green is Beautiful Hop ButtonWelcome to the Green is Beautiful Giveaway hop hosted by Happy Mothering! Our team of green bloggers have joined forces to bring you this event filled with prizes that will GREEN your beauty regimen. After you're done entering my giveaway, please visit the other blogs, which you'll find listed below the Rafflecopter form. Good luck!


I have two amazing prizes (US only)...

Prize #1:Tropical Traditions Virgin Coconut Oil Hair Treatment ($25 value)
This glass pint contains the answer to dry scalp and brittle hair. Virgin coconut oil is an excellent hair conditioner and is 100% pure and natural. I even use it on my skin as a pre-shower moisturizer.  Read my REVIEW POST.


clickR vanishing mistPrize #2: clickR Skin Care Vanishing Mist ($32 value)
From the brand that put the kibosh on derma drama, the clickR Vanishing Mist is a must in your skin care arsenal! It's effective without harsh ingredients and completely vegan. Read my REVIEW POST.


Please Read How to Enter This Giveaway: you must use the Rafflecopter form below to record your entries. Comments left on this blog post for the required or extra entries don't count unless you record it on the Rafflecopter form. There have been some changes to Rafflecopter! For instance, you now  have to login with Facebook or your name/email address. This enables you to see your entries in a giveaway and edit them if needed. Please wait for the form to load, it may take longer to pop up than the rest of the web page. Make sure you have java script enabled and your browser updated. If you encounter an error, refreshing the page usually resolves the problem. If problem persists, please report the issue to Rafflecopter. Login to get started, click "Do It" next to each task to see the instructions, and start collecting your entries!

Review: clickR Skin Care Vanishing Mist

I fell in adoration with clickR Skin Care during my first trimester when my face, neck, and chest were plagued with acne. The Daily Dermabrasion Wash rescued my complexion at a time when I was feeling self-conscious about my changing body. Oh, did I mention that their products are vegan?!

Now I am thrilled to have the opportunity to sample the clickR Vanishing Mist. This spritz banishes bacteria and gently refines pores. In contains healing ingredients like aloe leaf juice and cucumber fruit along with salicyclic acid to rid skin of nasty impurities.

I have been using the Vanishing Mist for the last three days after washing with the Daily Dermabrasion. My skin already looks brighter and more youthful! I will definitely be adding this product to my skin care toolkit.

Buy It: the Vanishing Mist retails online at clickr for $32.00. Also available in Sephora stores.

Win It:
Come back February 20-28, 2012 for the Green is Beautiful Giveaway Hop and a chance to enter to win a clickR Vanishing Mist

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Toddler Log: 2 Years and 27 Weeks Old

Sunday, February 19, 2012

There was a running theme occurring in my life this week...redemption. I redeemed myself as a person, wife, mother, and blogger while others redeemed themselves in my eyes too. Here's a recap:
  • Poor Marlie suffered way too many injuries this week for a 2.5 year-old or maybe not. I picked her up from school with a busted capillary in her right eye on Monday. No one could tell me what happened. She didn't cry the whole morning I was told, but there was a bruise on the skin under her eye like something poked her there and then ruptured a blood vessel in her eye. I wasn't mad. I know things like this are going to happen. I just wish someone noticed it before I did. I immediately saw it when I picked her up, but I guess that's because I'm her momma. She also busted her lip twice (once on the bathroom sink and the second time trying to pry open a DVD case with her teeth). She also got some nasty ammonia burns on her bum from what I suspect is expired cloth diaper detergent. In each case, I sat her down by the sink and performed an elaborate routine of nurse-care complete with gentle washing of the injury, applying medicine where needed, bandages (even though they don't stick well to lips), an ice pack, and lots of hugs and kissing the boo-boos. It endeared her to me even more. It made me feel so good because, truthfully, I have been feeling like a shitty parent lately...short on patience, time, and energy. But the loving look in her big, brown eyes when I dabbed a cold cloth on her cut lip restored my faith in my mothering.
  •  For Valentine's Day I decided to alleviate the hubster of any pressure to plan a date night. It saved him the anxiety and saved me the disappointment. I also arranged to have one of the teenagers from our church babysit Marlie. I made reservations at Medieval Times for our date. I have always wanted to go being a fan of the Renaissance culture. It was corny, but I had a great time. I was reminded that my happiness doesn't have to hinge on another person.
  • I received an email from one of the blogs where I won a giveaway that was not fulfilled. The sponsor Pink Butterfly Aprons was sincerely sorry for not sending me the correct items and sent me a box with the rest of my prize, plus other goodies. I want to publicly thank them for owning up to their mistake and rectifying it. 
  • I ended my week by receiving the Versatile Blogger Award from 3 Sons Have I and getting a divine pregnancy massage at a local spa. It was heavenly! I am renewed!

Review: Tropical Traditions Virgin Coconut Oil for Hair Treatment

Thursday, February 16, 2012

When it comes to winter hair care, there is one rule that you cannot break...MOISTURIZE, MOISTURIZE, MOISTURIZE!
Tropical Traditions Virgin Coconut Oil  Tropical Traditions Virgin Coconut Oil for Hair

Coconut oil has been used for hair treatment in coconut producing countries such as India and the Philippines for thousands of years. I've been using Tropical Traditions Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil for Hair Treatment as a pre-wash conditioner on me and Marlie for the past two weeks. Following the instructions on the label, I rubbed the oil into our hair and scalp at least 30 minutes before showering or before bed at night making sure to wear a protective plastic cap. Then I shampooed. That's it! I am happy to report that our scalp and hair are no longer dry and feels incredibly soft! Plus, it smells really great!

Tropical Traditions Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil for Hair Treatment works for all hair types.

Buy It: Tropical Traditions Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil for Hair Treatment retails for $25.00 for a pint (now on sale for $19.95!). Please use my affiliate links when you make your purchase:
Tropical Traditions Virgin Coconut Oil  Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil Hair Treatment - 16 oz





Win It: Come back February 20-28, 2012 for the Green is Beautiful Giveaway Hop and a chance to enter to win your own 16 oz jar of
Tropical Traditions Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil for Hair Treatment!  

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Wordful Wednesday: Globe-Trotting Love Birds

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

I survived another Valentine's Day without massacring my husband! Okay, so I had to make the reservations at Medieval Times and arrange for a babysitter, but I had a cheesy good time! And to his credit, he did surprise me with a great gift. He has great taste in jewelry. :-) Anyways, I was digging in my photo folder for something good for WW and came across these pictures from our European vacation in 2008. Damon planned the whole 3-week trip by himself. "See?," I told myself, he is capable of organizing a romantic getaway. Try to guess where we are in the photos while I go figure out where his motivation has gone.

[Guest Post] Kids

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Thanks for the guest post by Jo Levy 

Being a mom can be so tough and exhausting sometimes. I use to think that every age was the best and also the hardest. The newborn stage was just literally exhausting with no sleep, but also the best because you finally had your baby in your arms and not in your belly. When they start crawling, you worry about them and their safety around the house, but it is so exciting to see them learning and growing up. Walking is exhausting because you are constantly chasing them around. The worrying of motherhood just goes on and on! My kids are now in third and first grade. We just moved to Houston and I am sitting at home worrying about their first day at a new school. I so wish I could be a fly on the wall and see how it is going. Are they making friends? Do they like their teacher? Who are they playing with at recess? Will they see each other in the hallway? These are all my thoughts. Thankfully I had one task today to get my mind off of them. I researched shop for Bounce electricity rates in Houston Texas. Now I also won't have to worry what our energy bill will be when it comes in the mail!

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Must-See Love Stories on Film

If you are staying at home this Valentine's Day why not cuddle up on the couch with your favorite person, pet, or stuffed animal and watch one of these movies about love:

  • Documentary Love: The Loving Story. Airs on HBO. Why you should watch: this true story of an interracial couple in 1950s Virginia who fight to have their marriage legally recognized in the face of Jim Crow laws demonstrates the power of love to overcome racial prejudice and hatred.  

  • 80s Throwback Love: Say Anything. Available on DVD. Why you should watch: no romantic movie list would be complete without romantic leading man John Cusack starring in this story about young love. He showed us what a stereo heart was before it was a song.


  • Wacky Love: I Think I Love My Wife. Available on DVD. Why you should watch: Leave it to Chris Rock to make a movie about a marriage on the rocks, but fill it with hilarious narratives and fantasy sequences.

  • Redemptive Love: Crazy, Stupid, Love. Available on DVD. Why you should watch: When you're married for a long time it's easy to forget why you got together in the first place. And sometimes it takes being apart to remember why. 


  •  Sisterly Love: Bridesmaids. Why you should watch: You will laugh, cry and cheer for the bride and her maid of honor as they face the challenges of planning a wedding and preserving their friendship.




Comment Consideration #3

Monday, February 13, 2012

I received the same request in two comments on my Randomly Yours post, so I figure why not give a little comment consideration...

Krissy said...you know I love randoms! I wanna see this pic of you with long hair, I cant even picture it!

Kim said...I'd like to see pics of you with the long hair....
  • Okay, curious people. I never understood the fascination with hair, but I will indulge you since I put it put there. I had to go digging around on Facebook  because: 1. I don't get in front of the camera often, and 2. I didn't have a digital camera back then, but I found this one picture of me that a friend took and a photo of a scrapbook page with another photo:

Growing it out circa Fall 2006
My hair at it's longest. Summer Vacation 2007
Now tell me I don't look better with shorter hair.

Toddler Log: 2 Years and 26 Weeks Old

Sunday, February 12, 2012

I want to pay my respects to Whitney Houston before I begin this week's recaps. Her voice was the soundtrack of my middle school and high school crushes, relationships, and proms. In recent years she was known more for her personal problems than for her tremendous success as a singer and that was sad. I never stopped rooting for her. I read in this month's Essensce magazine that she was working on the remake of Sparkle. She looked fantastic in the accompanying photo. I was so happy for her. Now she has died suddenly. There will never be another Whitney.

Marlie turns 2.5 years old this week and but I didn't feel like celebrating at first. For one, this week is also the one year anniversary of the miscarriage I suffered last year. Secondly, I have not been feeling so hot. Have you ever been so tired that you can't see straight? Have you ever been so stressed that ever muscle in your neck and shoulder is a knot? That's what the past four months have been like for me. Between keeping a house tidy for showings, hosting my MIL for three weeks, running down to Miami to see my brother, and taking care of Marlie alone for a week all while carrying a growing life inside me...let's just say I was running on fumes. So I took action. I checked into a hotel by myself on Friday and did not come home until today. It was a little daunting at first. I had never been away from Marlie overnight...ever. But I pushed myself to take this break. I slept soundly for two straight nights and napped for three hours Saturday afternoon! I feel refreshed and recharged.

Now I have the energy to keep up with Marlie, at least for this week anyway. I have been shopping around for a baby doll for her 2.5 year/Valentine's Day gift. She seems like such a kid to me now, no longer a baby or a toddler. She talks SO MUCH and gets into SO MUCH TROUBLE! But I wouldn't change her for anything. My phone was acting  wonky all week and wouldn't hold a charge. Then Marlie dropped it and it's been fine ever since. How many parents can say their kids fixed their phone by dropping it?!

The Walking Dead returns tonight! It also airs the same time as Downton Abbey. What is a girl to do? Last Sunday, I watched Dowton Abbey instead of the Super Bowl, so maybe I've already made up my mind. I can watch the rerun of the other show On Demand.

Wordless Wednesday: Building Castles

Wednesday, February 8, 2012



Baby girl loves to "build castles." I think she is going to be an architect.



Win $105 in Valentine's Day Gifts Giveaway {#All4Love Event} US & WW

***This is a sticky post. Please scroll down for the newest articles on Marlie and Me***

all for love event Love is in the air! Are you ready for Valentine's Day? If not, the All for Love Valentine's Event is here to save the day! Real Mom Reviews and Mama Chocolate have teamed up to bring you a love- (and of course gift-) filled Valentine’s Day blog hop!This event will start on February 1st and run until 11:59 EST on February 7th.


I HAVE TWO AMAZING PRIZE PACKAGES...

Prize #1: Something Sweet (Worldwide)
$50 gift certificate to NanoStyle Jewelry, the first and only jeweler to engrave 24 karat gold onto semi precious stones. If you are looking for a unique gift, then NanoStyle's imprinted jewelry is a winner! Give your Valentine a gorgeous piece from NanoStyles' collection of pendants that express faith, belief or zodiac sign. Your loved one won't be disappointed! Read my REVIEW POST.
Eden FantasysPrize #2: Something Spicy (18+, US Only)
$55 gift certificate to EdenFantasys.Com, a leader in the adult shop industry offering a wide selection of products to put the spice back in your relationship. From candles to sexy lingerie to adult toys, EdenFantasys has something for everyone. Let EdenFantasys help you make this an unforgettable Valentine's Day! Read my PREVIEW POST.

Please Read How to Enter This Giveaway: you must use the Rafflecopter form below to record your entries. Comments left on this blog post for the required or extra entries don't count unless you record it on the Rafflecopter form. There have been some changes to Rafflecopter! For instance, you now  have to login with Facebook or your name/email address. This enables you to see your entries in a giveaway and edit them if needed. Please wait for the form to load, it may take longer to pop up than the rest of the web page. Make sure you have java script enabled and your browser updated. If you encounter an error, refreshing the page usually resolves the problem. If problem persists, please report the issue to Rafflecopter. Login to get started, click "Do It" next to each task to see the instructions, and start collecting your entries!

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