Monday, May 2, 2016

NutriSystem Week 4 Update #NSNation

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This week was a better week for me.  A new shipment of Nutrisystem food came in which makes everything easier. It's hard when you're at the end of your shipment and don't like everything that's left.  I was excited to see some new selections that I hadn't yet tried before and old favorites too.

I focused on having fresh fruit and vegetables with my meals.  One thing that I didn't realize was that I would be back on the Turbo and Nutricrush shakes again.  These actually taste great to me and I blended a banana into them yesterday for some extra nutrition and flavor.  I loved it!

Stuffed shells

Some of my favorites from this week included the sausage and cheese pizza, the milk chocolate covered pretzels, the chicken sandwich, the ravioli, and the mac and cheese.   I still can't get over how you can eat those foods on a diet! 

Yum!

I am down one extra pound this week which makes a total weight loss of five pounds.  I feel great about myself and can surely notice a difference in my body.  It's easy to tell that I've been working hard and receiving the results I want.  Five pounds down is a lot! I still need to work on drinking more water, that's been the hardest thing for me.

My cravings seem to have gone away for the most part.  In the first few days and weeks, all I wanted was unhealthy foods and I had some rough days.  I now no longer really have those thoughts, which is wonderful.

Stay tuned for next week!



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Saturday, April 30, 2016

Save Money At Garage Sales With a New Baby

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Let's face it, babies are expensive.  Between diapers, wipes, clothes and formula along with all of the other gear that comes with having a baby, it adds up! Of course you can find regular coupons to save on diapers and formula, but beyond those coupons there's not much retail savings on everything else a baby needs.



If you're currently pregnant or just had a new baby, garage sales are the best way you'll save money with a baby.  I remember when I was pregnant in the summer of 2014, I drove myself all around my town going to every garage sale I could find.  

Stocking up for Scarlett and getting everything she needs was what I was looking to do. Obviously we preferred to have some things new like her baby furniture and travel system, but it makes sense to buy some things used.  I remember getting her changing table pad for $5, and knowing that they sold for about $30 online.  Why pay $8 or more for children's books when you can pay a quarter or 50 cents each? Just wipe them down and you're good to go.  I don't think any book in Scarlett's bookshelf was purchased brand new.  We have a whole collection of books for her that we paid practically nothing for.

My best purchase was an entire gigantic Rubbermaid container filled with clothes from newborn to 12 months that looked brand new.  Some of the clothes had tags on them and were never even worn! I paid $25 for the entire tub and the seasons of the clothing matched up perfectly to Scarlett.  It was truly like winning the baby lottery! I can't even tell you how many pants, dresses, shirts, and pajamas were in that tub.  That saved us so much money and was probably worth a few hundred dollars.

I buy most of Scarlett's toys from garage sales.  Of course I see so many toys that look very used and dirty, I don't buy those.  Anything I buy has to be in excellent condition.  I wipe it down with disinfecting wipes and then let her play with it.  Why pay $30 for a toy when I can pay $2? She has a whole playroom of toys for the fraction of the cost of what they would be new.  She's happy about it and so am I!

This morning I went to a garage sale and bought her a $3 Halloween costume that looked in excellent condition.  I washed it and put it away in her closet.  I saw a similar costume online for $35.  There's no reason that I would pay $35 for her to wear something for just a short amount of time.  I saw a bag of a package of 10 brand new pacifiers this morning for $5.  Each package cost about $5 in the store and there's 2 pacifiers in each package.  So instead of paying $50, you're saving $45! 

It's such a thrill to find a good deal that you know your child could need or want.  Saving money is so enjoyable and I really love doing it.  Every weekend you'll find me at garage sales in the morning during the warmer months of the year.  I hope Scarlett will come with me when she's older! I don't think people realize how much money they can save for their kids at garage sales.  There's always a good deal to be found, and it's time you find yours today!







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Friday, April 29, 2016

It's Easy to Save Money With Groupon Coupons! #GrouponCoupons

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*DISCLOSURE* This is a sponsored post through Groupon Coupons.  All thoughts are strictly my own.

If you're a longtime reader of my blog, you'll know that I'm a stay-at-home mom.  Since I don't work, it's important to me to save as much money for my family as possible.  I enjoy seeing the bottom of my receipt stating how much money I saved! It's such a thrill.  You'll always see me posting about some bargain or great deal I got.  It's very hard for me to pay full price for an item, and I'm thankful that so many stores offer money saving coupons and discounts.  Every penny that you save counts and you can use it toward a big purchase or a vacation for your family.  Who wouldn't love that?


It's now easier than ever to save money thanks to Groupon Coupons! Everyone's favorite discount and deals website is offering you money saving coupons that allow you to keep more money in your wallet.  You'll be able to save on more than just events and experiences with these coupons.  Groupon has a coupon resource that allows you to find coupons that are verified from lots of your favorite retailers.  

I frequently shop at Babies R Us, Carter's, and Kohl's at least a few times a month.  I was excited to find out that those three retailers are on Groupon Coupons and have some wonderful money saving offers going on.  You can't forget about other stores like Sam's Club, Office Depot, JC Penney's, and even Foot Locker when you're looking to save a bundle too.  There are no fees to pay and no membership needed for Groupon Coupons.  Just search for the retailer you want and with a click of the mouse you'll be on your way to saving a pretty penny.

There are even exclusive offers that you can only find on Groupon Coupons.  All families love to go to the movies, but those ticket prices aren't cheap.  I was able to find $2 off 3 movie tickets on Fandango when I searched.  You may say two dollars isn't that much, but in the end it still adds up.

Head on over to Groupon Coupons today and you'll be delighted at how much money you'll save.  It's time to have more money in your wallet for the things you want to do. 

Follow Groupon on Twitter, and like them on Facebook


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Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Layla Sleep Review

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The average human sleeps 1/3rd of their life away.  There's no reason to spend that portion of your life sleeping on an uncomfortable mattress. When you lay down at night, it's important to feel like you're snoozing on clouds.  Incorporate a memory foam mattress into your life and you'll always have a smile on your face.


Layla Sleep offers the most comfortable mattress on the planet.  This is not any ordinary mattress though, oh no.  Layla's mattresses feature copper infused memory foam so you can sleep like a king.  The use of copper reduces joint pain relief and offers better blood circulation.  If you have arthritis or suffer from muscle pain, this mattress is a must for you. Another bonus is that you'll be able to sleep cooler since copper doesn't hold heat.  If you're tired of sleeping on your old uncomfortable mattress, it's time to introduce Layla Sleep into your life.  Why not head on over to the site and order your new mattress?

The company offers a wonderful trial option for the customers.  They allow you to keep the mattress for up to 4 months and then you can decide if you want to continue using it or not. If not, you can send it back with no questions asked. 

Hello my love

I was fortunate enough to receive a Layla Sleep queen sized memory foam mattress.  The mattress arrived in a small box and that really boggled my mind.  It's crazy how a mattress can fit into such a tiny box! 

Once you let the rectangular piece of heaven decompress, it's time to get your comfy on! Within 2 minutes the mattress was ready to be put on the bed.  Of course I was very excited to sleep on it that night.  When I woke up in the morning, I felt refreshed, rejuvenated, and ready for the day ahead. 

The memory foam is like a cloud and as soon as you lay on it, everything's right in the world.  There's honestly nothing like this mattress.  I don't know how I've lived without it.  I truly look forward to sleeping at night now more than ever.

I suffer from occasional back pain and the copper is doing wonders to help with that.  If you suffer from any kind of arthritis or joint pain, the mattress will really help you.  You can't put a price tag on waking up rested and pain-free.

If you're looking to upgrade your bed to the creme de la creme of mattresses, Layla Sleep is waiting for your order.  

*DISCLOSURE* Thank you to Layla Sleep for providing me with a product sample in order to facilitate this post. All thoughts are strictly my own.                    


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Monday, April 25, 2016

Every Pet Needs Petco's #RepeatDelivery Service!

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My dog Lynnie has three loves in life; her treats, her toys, and her family.  She eats, sleeps, and breathes treats.  I can assure you that when she's awake she's plotting of how to get more yummies, and when she's sleeping she's dreaming of them.  Carolyn does not discriminate against any treat but loves them all too much.  If you show her a bag of treats she will patiently sit and wag her tail, while staring at you with big eyes. She can hear the box of treats rustling from a mile away too.  This girl loves her treats! Why not make your dog the happiest pup on the block with an order from Petco?


Everybody's familiar with Petco, which is a one-stop shop for all of your pet needs.  If you're looking for a new treat or a toy for your dog, and catnip for your cat, they'll surely have all of your pet requests covered.  Step in today to spoil your furry friend.  They deserve it!

If you didn't already know, Petco has a new repeat delivery service which is so convenient. You can simply schedule a specific order to be delivered within a timeframe of your choice continuously.  Does your dog need specific flea medication or vitamins every month or two? No problem, you'll never forget to order it again with the handy repeat delivery service! All you have to do is open your door and pick up the package when it arrives.  

Lynnie loves Greenies and devours them almost as quickly as we can buy them.  I don't live that close to a Petco, so having the opportunity to have them delivered makes life so much easier.

I do have a secret for you, it's Lynnie's birthday on May 1st.  I have a few presents I bought for her that she has no idea about.  Do you think she'll like them? I can't wait to give them to her! 


Lynnie enjoying Greenies

Every pet parent should know about Petco's repeat delivery service, make sure you tell everyone who has pets.  It's such a convenient service that everyone should use. Even if you don't have pets, why not schedule a delivery every two months to your grand-dog with toys and treats? They'll absolutely love it!

  • Sign up for repeat delivery and receive up to 20% off certain items for your pet and receive a $30 eGift Card with any purchase over $39
  • To qualify, first-time new customers must sign-up and place their first Repeat Delivery order, between Friday, April 1, 2016 and Saturday, April 30, 2016.
  • Exclusions: The Promotional eGift Cards are not valid on donations, backordered items, or the purchase of another Petco eGift Card or physical Petco Gift Card.

*DISCLOSURE* I received compensation in exchange for promoting Petco's Repeat Delivery Service.  All thoughts are strictly my own.



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Nutrisystem Week 3 Update #NSNation

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This week was a little bit of a tough week.  I had my cousin's wedding out of state that I attended.  I couldn't bring Nutrisystem food with me as I flew, and the food would have taken up too much room in my suitcase.  Another lb dropped off before I left, but now I have to work harder because I don't feel as good about myself after getting back.  My portions were under control and I chose to eat as healthy as I could, but the options offered weren't always the best choices.

This week is all about getting back into the game and being focused.  I'm going to try to go to the gym this week and really step it up.  I felt so good about myself and even got compliments on how great I looked before the wedding.  Nothing feels as fantastic as other people noticing your hard work and results, and I really want to keep that up.  I'm going to be going to the store later today and picking up more fresh fruits and veggies for the week.  Roasted carrots and strawberries sound fantastic!

I did enjoy such fabulous Nutrisystem selections last week as the margherita pizza and chocolate covered pretzels.  I can't get over how delicious the pizza was! What was surprising was how big the portion was and how it was covered with fabulous cheese and tomatoes.  Who says you can't eat tasty food on a diet?  The chocolate covered pretzels were the perfect combination of sweet and salty and everything you could ask for in a snack.


I can't wait to see what options I'll be enjoying this week.  Breakfast is calling! Join me next week for week 4's update.

*DISCLOSURE* I am receiving Nutrisystem for 3 months in exchange for writing about my weight loss journey.  All thoughts are strictly my own.  

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Tuesday, April 19, 2016

JLo's JLust Perfume-Enter to win!

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With warm weather finally upon us, there's so many delicious smelling things in the air including blooming flowers, freshly cut grass, and even ripe and juicy fruit.  Now that it's springtime, have you thought about updating your perfume scent for the occasion?

JLo or Jennifer Lopez is best known for her singing career, but she's also recognizable for her beauty and fashion sense.  JLo's been the face of many advertising campaigns over the years which I'm sure you've seen.  If you didn't already know, she also has an extensive perfume line.  In 2002, JLo created her first women's perfume entitled Glow.  Currently, there's a wide range of perfumes available from her line including Forever Glowing, Glow After Dark, Live, Live Luxe, and many more.  With a wide array of scent notes from each perfume, you're bound to find a favorite. Any perfume from the line makes an excellent gift for yourself or a friend. 



Recently, JLo has launched her newest perfume called JLust.  This alluring and sensual perfume expresses her sophistication and feminine style.  The notes of the perfume feature mandarin, apple blossom, mara strawberry, jasmine, white peach, and vanilla orchid among many others.  All of those notes combine to form one fabulous smelling perfume that you'll want to use daily.


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Monday, April 18, 2016

Nutrisystem Update Week 2 #NSNation

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This is my second week down on Nutrisystem and I have lost one additional pound.  I seem to have somehow gained one pound back, so my weight loss currently is two pounds.  I definitely can feel that I've lost those two pesky pounds though.  You might not think two pounds is a lot, but you surely can feel that initial weight loss.

For my second week on Nutrisystem, I was able to finally enjoy some of the frozen options sent to me.  What stood out to me the most was the red velvet whoopie pie, the chocolate cupcake, the grilled chicken sandwich, the hamburger, and the cinnamon roll.  I wish I was sent more of these selections, they're so good!  I also enjoyed French toast, pancakes, and waffles for breakfast.  Who else could say they were on a diet when eating pancakes for breakfast? I love it!

Cinnamon roll and apples for breakfast

I had one night where I felt very weak with hunger.  It was just one of those days where you had to see your husband eating a whole pizza and the temptation was very real.  I tried to eat as much veggies as I could that night, but all I wanted was grilled cheese and fries.  Luckily I got through that night but it wasn't easy.  That was the only time during the week that I felt like that.

I'm still working on drinking more water, but I've bought flavor packets to enhance my water which helps.  Who doesn't love a big glass of strawberry lemonade flavored water? Yum! 

I was able to go to the gym twice this week to exercise, I wish I could go more but it's not easy with nobody to watch my toddler except at night.

Chicken sandwich, I love you.

What's keeping me motivated is the fact that I feel better and can see a difference in myself already.  I know if I keep going, I'll be so happy and satisfied.

Stay tuned for next week's update! 





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Saturday, April 16, 2016

Recipes Your Toddler Will Love

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I'm lucky that my child will eat almost anything.  I have noticed lately she's getting slightly pickier in that she refuses food at first, but then will eventually give in and eat it.  Scarlett absolutely loves fruit and vegetables and goes right for them first at meal times.  It's a struggle for most toddlers to want to eat veggies, so I know that I should be grateful that she loves them.

If you're looking for kid-friendly recipes that your little one will devour, I have a few great ones for you.  The wonderful thing about these recipes is that they pack in the veggies and your little one won't even know!

Mini Turkey Pot Pies:

I actually found this recipe on Pinterest from someone else and it's such a great one.  You buy crescent dough and carefully cut out mini circles with the rim of the glass.  Put the circles into the bottom of a greased muffin pan and fill with a mixture of chopped turkey, peas and carrots, and cream of chicken soup that you've mixed together.  Bake at 400F for about 15 minutes.  These mini little beauties are bite sized and perfect for lunch or dinner.  Go ahead and have one yourself!


Broccoli Cheddar Bites: 

The best thing about these bites is that they combine broccoli and cheddar.  Who doesn't love that combo? It's one of my favorites.  I pour half a cup of seasoned breadcrumbs into a bowl and chop up a whole bag of frozen broccoli florets.  Make sure you chop well because you don't want extremely large chunks in your bites.  Mix 3 eggs well with the breadcrumbs and then combine with the broccoli and a lot of shredded cheddar cheese.  Mix well and then put into muffin pans and bake at 350F for 25 minutes.


Hope your children enjoy these recipes.  They are delicious and so easy to make!


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Thursday, April 14, 2016

All Homes Around the World Should Have Survival Tabs

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If you've ever been in a situation where there's a lack of food or water, it can certainly be scary.  Maybe you're hiking in the woods for an extended period of time, or you enjoy sailing.  Both of those activities only allow you to bring a limited amount of food with you. Wouldn't it be nice to be able to have a constant supply of food with you that's compact at all times?



The Survival Tabs were originally developed for the space program using high-quality protein, carbs, and fat.  With just 240 calories per serving, they provide 100% of the daily essential vitamins and minerals required to maintain your body's functions.  The chewable food tablets are gluten free and non-GMO and come in four delicious flavors including strawberry, chocolate, butterscotch, and vanilla.  

The best part about Survival Tabs is that they are a convenient, compact, lightweight, and life-sustaining 15-day food ration for any emergency.  This can be stretched to a 30-day supply under extreme conditions.  The tablets have an unopened shelf life of 25 years, maxing them excellent for long-term storage.  One pack of 12 tablets is meant to keep you alive and going for 24 hours at a time.  Every home around the world should these on hand, you never know when you'll need it.

If you turn on the news, you're guaranteed to hear about a region of the United States suffering from tornadoes, hurricanes, and even flooding.  Those disastrous events don't make it easy to have food on hand.  I remember watching Hurricane Katrina coverage on the news 11 years ago and seeing the victims in rowboats trying to just survive.  I'm sure food was a major concern for the New Orleans residents even with the Red Cross's help.  In situations like that, Survival Tabs would surely be a great necessity.

It's also important to keep Survival Tabs on hand if you're a very active person and enjoy outdoor activities like biking and mountain-climbing.  These activities don't allow you to bring a lot of food with you especially since it would be heavy to carry.  Storing Survival Tabs in a backpack would be ideal.

As you can see, Survival Tabs are something that every home across the world should have. Keep them in your emergency kit in your garage, or even in your car or purse.  An emergency could happen at any point and it's essential to be prepared.

*DISCLOSURE* I received product samples in order to facilitate this post.  All thoughts are strictly my own*


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Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Diono Review

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My daughter and I are constantly on the go.  Every week Scarlett has several activities that she's always traveling to and from, and it feels like we're always in the car! A reliable and safe car seat is mandatory when you're transporting your children around.  You want the car seat to not only fit your little one well, but have them ride comfortably in it too.  Diono knows all about providing a quality car seat that grows with your baby.



Diono offers a full line of the highest quality safest car seats, convertible+ boosters & travel accessories to meet all of your family's needs.  Whether you're looking for a car seat that offers rear and forward facing for your little one, or a just booster for your older child, Diono has you covered.  Diono's products are quality made and built to last.  The best part about the company's car seats is that they are offered in many different colors and styles depending on your needs.  Keep Diono in mind for future baby shower gifts.  I know any new mom would love a car seat to drive their baby around in.

My car currently has an infant car seat in it.  I know some of you may be thinking, what? I totally understand your reaction. Scarlett is small for her age and has been able to ride in her infant car seat for a lot longer than probably most babies do.  She finally has outgrown it and it's certainly time for a new one.  I've heard wonderful things about Diono's car seats from my mom friends, and I knew choosing the brand for our next seat made sense.



Our car has been recently upgraded to the Diono Radian RXT in the beautiful shadow color.  It's one upgrade I'm not complaining about! 

The Radian RXT is a convertible+booster car seat which is every parent's dream come true. This seat allows your child to rear-face from 5-45 lbs, forward face from 20-80 lbs, and then converts to a booster seat for children up to 120 lbs.  As you can see, it's really a product you can use for years and years.

My husband easily was able to install it in the car.  It's very tall so it did take up more room in the backseat than our old car seat.  Scarlett seemed very excited about the new addition and instantly wanted to sit in it.  The straps fit her snugly and securely and I had no concerns at all about her safety.  I think all of her baby friends are jealous of her new ride! There's a cup holder on the side to hold her water or juice when she's on the go.

The sleek shadow color is a dark black with white trim on the bottom.  Scarlett's stroller is also black so it's nice to have matching baby gear.

I'm very satisfied with this car seat and feel confidently that my daughter is safe and secure when I drive.  You can't ask for anything more than that as a parent.

*DISCLOSURE* Thank you to Diono for providing me with a product sample in order to facilitate this post.  All thoughts are strictly my own.  


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Monday, April 11, 2016

Nutrisystem Week 1 Update #NSNation

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This past week was my first week on Nutrisystem.  I chose to go on the program because I wasn't feeling too great about myself lately.  When I looked in the mirror, I wasn't happy with what I saw and knew I had to make a change.  I've heard excellent things about the program in the past and thought it could be the answer I was looking for.



My Nutrisystem food is a mixture of shelf stable foods and frozen foods.  The best part about this diet plan is that you can still eat pasta, pizza, and even dessert! I don't love every option sent to me, but not everyone will it's expected.  Some of the meal choices look fantastic including chocolate sundaes for dessert, flatbread pizza's and soups for lunch, along with pancakes and French toast for breakfast! You can have snacks throughout the day like cookies, pretzels, and even bars.

Nutrisystem muffin for breakfast

My first day on the program really wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be.  When diet day rolls around you normally dread it, but I embraced it this time.  I do think positive thinking is the key to success.  If you think positively, you'll be able to reach your goals.  I had a blueberry muffin for breakfast and then about 2 1/2 hours later I felt very weak and thought it might be a good time to have a shake.

Flatbread pizza

For the first week, you're supposed to have a Turbo Shake between breakfast and lunch, and then between lunch and dinner.  It's what Nutrisystem calls "bootcamp week." The chocolate (yum!) shakes were actually really delicious and I had no problem drinking them.  Make sure you drink the Turbo Shakes icy cold because they taste best that way.  A wonderful bonus of these shakes is that they made my hunger weakness go away and I was able to feel better.

I try to choose the dinner options that sound the most filling so I won't think about eating again after dinner.  My first day ended with the chicken pot pie.  Can you believe that you can have chicken pot pie on a diet? It was delicious and I loved the flaky crust on top.  I ate dinner early around 5 pm because I was hungry, but I was full the rest of the night! I was very surprised.  My dinner was paired with some steamed green beans.

Turbo shake

If you're a person who is used to eating large portions, the portions sizes for Nutrisystem will be an adjustment for you.  You're allowed to have 4 servings of non-starchy veggies per day, and I chose to have green beans and carrots.  I wasn't sure what non-starchy vegetables were but your diet plan booklet informs you.  It was surprising to see all of the vegetables that weren't approved like peas.  I'm a huge lover of veggies to begin with so this was easy for me to enjoy.

Chicken pasta parmesan

The biggest struggle for me so far is drinking enough water.  You're supposed to have 64 oz of water per day, which is a lot! I do drink water during the day, but not nearly that much. The water helps with your weight loss so try to drink as much as you can.  I've bought flavoring for my water to give it the boost I need.

During this week, I was only able to go to the gym twice.  I am a stay-at-home mom and only able to go to the gym when my toddler goes to sleep at night.  I am pleased to report that I have lost 2 lbs my first week! This is great success for me.

I feel very satisfied with how my first week went and I can't wait to continue to update you on my Nutrisystem journey.

Like NutriSystem on Facebook and follow them on Twitter.

*DISCLOSURE* I am receiving NutriSystem for 3 months in exchange for blogging about my weight-loss journey.  


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Friday, April 8, 2016

Getting Your Baby on A Schedule

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If I think back hard enough, I can remember what it was like when Scarlett was unscheduled.  It feels like so long ago though. She napped whenever she wanted throughout the day.  My little bundle of baby could sleep at 2:30 PM one day, and then the next day she'd be up and ready to party at the same time.

In the early days and months of Scarlett's life, she woke up to eat every couple of hours.  She would sleep 5-6 hour stretches during the night and then my day would begin early, around 5:30 AM.  Scarlett would have a bottle and then go back to sleep.  This cycle would repeat many times a day.  

I was tired but couldn't nap when she slept because I wasn't sure how long her naps would be.  Of course I was worried I wouldn't hear her cry either when she woke up.  Going out was difficult because you'd never know if she needed a nap or if she'd be perfectly fine in her stroller.  I can recall many instances of her screaming and tired from being overtired and exhausted.  This doesn't make for a fun mommy or baby. 

Unscheduled 3 month old cute girl

Right around the 6 month mark, I had had enough of my little one being unscheduled.  I remember looking at a sample wake/feed schedule online for her age.  That day I decided to implement it and it was the best thing I could have ever done.  I changed the schedule to my liking and to the times I thought would be best.  She woke up around 6 am and would have a bottle immediately. After that breakfast was 7:30, nap 9-10, lunch 11:30, nap 12-3, dinner 5:30, and then bath and bed at 7.  I was very lucky that Scarlett was extremely adaptable and did wonderful with her new schedule.  The best part was that since she was eating solids and more full, she was sleeping 12 hours a night! How fantastic is that? 

Now that Scarlett is 16 months old, she's been on the schedule for 10 months.  I've changed the schedule a tiny bit over the months, but she now wakes up for the day at 7 am and has a sippy cup of milk as soon as she's up.  After that, breakfast is at 8 am.  She doesn't take a morning nap anymore.  Lunch is at 11:30am, and she goes down for a nap from 12pm to 2:30 or 3.  Scarlett has dinner at 5:15-5:30 pm and a bath after that.  Then she's ready to go to bed at 7 pm.  I truly believe that a scheduled child is a happier child.  Children need routines and consistency to flourish and grow.

Lunch-time girl

A great benefit of a schedule is that since your child knows the routine, they'll know what to expect everyday.  They'll be ready to eat breakfast at 8, and ready to sleep at 12 pm.  It's a wonderful feeling to be in-tune with your child's needs and know exactly when they need to sleep and have them know it too.  Having no guessing games is such a benefit.  You can go to the store right after their nap and know that they won't have a screaming meltdown because they're tired. 

It may take some adjusting for you or your child in the beginning, but everything will become so much better.  A schedule is everything and makes for a happier parent/child relationship.  



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Tuesday, April 5, 2016

A Spinach, Apple, and Pecan Salad Will Make Your Belly Happy

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There's nothing I love during the warmer months of the year than salad.  It's still chilly here in New England, but warmer temps are on the horizon.  I can feel them! When it's hot outside nothing is more refreshing than a crisp and cool salad paired with a glass of iced tea.

Check out this fabulous spinach salad that combines apples and pecan for a crunch you won't be able to resist.



Ingredients:
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon prepared mustard
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 golden delicious apple, halved, cored, thinly sliced
1/4 cup red onion, cut in thin strips
3/4 lb fresh spinach, washed, stems removed, leaves torn
1/2 cup toasted pecans


Steps:
In a serving bowl whisk together oil, vinegar, mustard, sugar, salt and pepper until thick. Add the apple and the onion.  Make sure to toss until apples and onions are covered with dressing.  Place the spinach on top then the pecans.  Just before serving, toss all together. 

Feel free to change or substitute anything in this salad.  It would make a great side dish or even main entree if you're looking for a lighter option.  Serve with a roll to make it the ultimate crowd-pleasing dish.

*Recipe taken from Food.com*


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Friday, April 1, 2016

Ebay Review

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Anyone who knows me knows I love to shop.  What I enjoy most about shopping is when I'm able to purchase everything I'm looking for at once.  You know what's even better? When you don't even have to get out of your pajamas to make those purchases, of course! There's nothing better than having a one-stop shop for all of your needs.


Ebay allows you to buy and sell electronics, cars, fashion apparel, jewelry, baby items, housewares and so much more.  You have the option to bid auction style, or if you don't want to wait you can do a buy it now.  A buy it now allows you to instantly purchase the item.  I've been a member of Ebay since 2000 and I don't see myself stopping anytime soon. Over the years I've purchased clothes, items for my daughter, electronics, DVD's, and so much more.  If you search hard enough you can score a really great deal that will surely make you smile.  Keep Ebay in mind for gifts for anyone for any occasion.  

As part of Ebay's Partner Network Product Review Pilot, I was allowed to choose an item I wanted from the site to review.  I'm always up for a shopping spree, so I was very excited for the opportunity.  

I scoured the site for a while thinking of what to choose.  I scrolled past designer shoes, bags, jewelry,  and even TV's before I made my decision.  I've had a KitchenAid mixer for years but it's been breaking down and hasn't been working well lately.  Choosing a new mixer was the choice I knew I wanted to make.  

A KitchenAid Artisan 5qt Ice Blue Mixer showed up at my door not too long after and I couldn't have been more excited.  If you've never owned a KitchenAid mixer before, it's the ultimate appliance for cooking and baking.  I don't make cookies in anything besides my mixer.  This appliance comes with a dough hook, wire whip, and flat beater for whipping up breads and desserts to delight anyone.  


Isn't this just the most gorgeous color? I can't get over it! This beauty comes with a stainless steel mixer bowl and has a 10-speed slide control which ranges from a very fast whip to a very slow stir.  The unique feature about this mixer is that you can buy attachments that connect to the very front.  How about using an ice cream maker attachment or a pasta maker attachment? There's even a spiralizer attachment that allows you to make carrot or zucchini noodles! Any attachment would certainly come in hand for your next diner party or holiday meal.

What I like to make in my KitchenAid mixer most is cookies.  Everyone knows me for my cookies and requests them for various functions and events.  I love to bake them too! When the mixer arrived, I knew a batch of chocolate chip, pretzel, and Reese's peanut butter cup cookies would be a perfect idea.

Look at those beautiful chunks of Reese's! 

The batter mixed and ready to bake

The batter mixed together beautifully and evenly and in no time I had my dough ready to bake.  I use the flat beater when I mix cookie dough and it never disappoints.  All my ingredients get mixed together well and my cookies always turn out fabulously.

The end result.  I have a hard time not staging food photo shots! 


Every kitchen around the world needs a KitchenAid mixer in it.  You'll create fabulous crowd-pleasing meals and desserts that your guests won't soon forget.

*DISCLOSURE* This product was provided to me at no charge by Ebay.  All thoughts are strictly my own.  



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