Saturday, January 31, 2009

We have winners!

Remember that Pizza Hut giveaway from last week? Well, we have winners! Congrats to Maria Joy, Stefani and Shania. If a gift card isn’t claimed by this coming Friday, the alternate, Dawn Taylor, will get a card.

As for the Planetjill giveaway held this past week? Heather won. Congrats

And don’t worry. There’s another giveaway scheduled for Monday. Check back then to see what’s in store.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Earn Your Stripes!

"If you build it, they will come."

While reading about Kellogg's Frosted Flakes "Earn Your Stripes" program, I couldn't help but think about that famous line from Field of Dreams.

The gist? Kellogg's is calling upon YOU. During the Superbowl on Sunday, a commercial called "Plant a Seed" will focus on how everyone can make a difference in building stronger communities and enriching a child's life. This call to action is part of the Earn Your Stripes (Tm) program.

The message? Kids are filled with a tremendous amount of promise and potential. And we need to give kids a place to REALIZE this. So, 50 fields across the US are to be renovated. What better way to keep families (kids and parents) active and engaged? The hope is that these fields will once again become places of fun and foster a sense of community. Check out this site for more info. (Am assuming the site will be ready by Sunday. So if you don't see much on it now, check back later.)

This post was written on behalf of MomCentral.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Giveaway Monday - Planetjill necklace!

Planetjill is offering YOU $10.00 off your purchase. Just enter "mommyblog" when you check out of the site.

Earlier this month, I waxed poetic about how much I love, love, LOVE my Planetjill necklace. Seriously, I wanted to shout that out from the roof top. But being it was cold outside and I'm lazy, I took to my computer instead.

Many people expressed an interested in Planetjill jewelery and well... You've spoken. And Planetjill founder Jill Schiff has heard you!

This week she's giving you a chance to win a Planetjill necklace. This one in fact. How SERIOUSLY AWESOME is that?

A bit about this necklace? Sterling silver charm and chain. The square-frame is about dime-sized. The chain is very durable and can withstand a grabby toddler. You chose your favorite photo to be placed inside. Planetjill will take care of the rest. There is a slight weight to the pieces. This is good because your charm will stay in place. Oh and if you've got more than one child (or grandchild or niece or nephew or cherished pet) you'd love to show off? You can always add more charms! Plus the charms are very well sealed. So if you jump in the shower and forget you're wearing your necklace? No worries.

Planetjill has a host a great gift ideas for Valentine's Day for men and women. (Not just photo charms but monogrammed charms and if you check out the "new collection" you'll see ALOT of really great pieces there too.)

Once you see a Planetjill piece you'll become a big fan. But don't just take my word for it. Julia Roberts, Maria Shriver, Oprah Winfrey, Katie Couric, Reese Witherspoon, Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen, Cher, Drew Barrymore, Cameron Diaz, Lucy Liu, Mariska Hargitay and Joely Fisher are also huge fans too!

TO ENTER: Leave a comment here or at Midwestern Mommy (Or leave a comment in both places to increase your chance of winning.) Anyone 18 years old age and older can enter. Winner will be drawn Feb. 1 and notified via email.

This week Bloggy Giveaways is hosting a Blog Carnival. Go to their site for a gigantic list of cool stuff other bloggers are also giving away.

Friday, January 23, 2009

The DC 24 want to share their Inauguration Day experience with YOU!

On Tuesday, more than one million people filled the Washington Mall to watch President Obama be sworn in as our 44th leader and first African American President.

Twenty four of the people lucky enough to witness the event were fifth and sixth graders from the Frazier Preparatory Academy in downtown Chicago. The kids are known as the DC 24.

Luckily for those of us who didn't get to go, the kids have blogged and posted videos of their experiences at Share My Inauguration, sponsored by The McCormick Foundation. We can live vicariously through them! They've gotten a chance to see the city, test their reporting skills by speaking with other people at the inauguration and even interview Robin Roberts of Good Morning America.

The site also lets you get to know a bit about these kiddos. The 24 were chosen based on "a written essay, grades, test scores, an oral interview, and citizenship", according to the site. After being selected, "students participated in a weekly civics course where they learned more about the Constitution, our election process and African-American history."

Check out the site. Its very uplifting. I don't know these children but I'm so proud of them for what they've achieved. No doubt, this is an experience they'll all share with their own grandchildren someday.

This post was written on behalf on

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Greatest Snow on Earth? Indeed!

The first time I skied, I hated it. We'd gone to Lake Tahoe. The snow had melted the day before. The green routes had been packed down from everyone skiing on them. And then it refroze. So my first experience wasn't much more than falling down repeatedly on a very high, icy mountain. I ended up breaking my tailbone. Yeah, not fun.

I didn't really want to go ever again. But the hubby, who LOVES to ski, talked me into trying it again. This time we went to Park City Utah. I still have a t-shirt from that trip that says "The Best Snow on Earth." The skiing was pretty great. So, yes I think they have a right to brag.

We'd decided on the Park City trip as we watched kindergartners zigged and zagged effortlessly down the mountain, that we'd take our kids skiing someday. We wanted to get our kids started early so they'd feel comfortable on the skis and slopes. We planned to go every year. But then we had a child. Reality (and the cost of raising a child) slapped us upside the head. We decided we'd try to go every other year.

So while we've taken our son skiing to other places, it just hasn't been the same as our Park City experience. We were planning a trip this year to Park City but then I found out I was pregnant. (And skiing at least for me, is prohibited.) So we eagerly await next year's trip.

If you or the kids are new to skiing? There are some wonderful, patient (and HOT) ski instructors. The are even kiddie ski schools that will keep the kids busy with lessons while you tackle some blacks. (Or greens in my case.) And there are many a fabulous restaurant. This is good because after a great day of skiing? You tend to come off the mountain HUNGRY.

If you are are looking to plan a Park City vacation (or want to just dream about one for now) visit this cool adventure blog written by women who have a passion for Park City. You can get lots of info on lessons for you and the kids, other activities, (there's tons to do) resort services, snow reports and tips for making the most out of your trip.

This post was written on behalf of

Monday, January 19, 2009

Three $20 Pizza Hut gift cards up for grabs!

When Pizza Hut announced their new All Natural pizza, made with a multi-grain, hand-tossed crusts, all natural meats, cheeses and a sauce from vine-ripened tomatoes, I was pretty excited. We love Pizza Hut. But I do feel a bit guilty some times after I place an order. I often thought it would be awesome if someone could make a healthier pizza.

Well, I'm guessing Pizza Hut had other customers with the same ideas. (Only those people must have expressed that sentiment, unlike me.) And viola -- a healthier alternative!

We tried Pizza Hut's newest product last week. In fact, since it was just Seth and myself, we ordered a half cheese and half sausage/mushroom pizza. Seth wolfed his pieces down in record time. This very picky, first grader deemed it "awesome".

The All-Natural pizza didn't seem as greasy as the typical Pizza Hut pizzas we've ordered in the past. Overall, the All Natural tastes alot like the others. (The meat seemed slightly saltier to me.) So at least you know you won't be sacrificing taste for health. (Click here for nutritional info.)

Unfortunately, there was only three pieces left by the time we finished. Seth awoke early the
next day to eat his remaining piece for breakfast. I'd put my remaining slices in the freezer and had Pizza Hut for lunch today. Hmmmm. Just like the regular stuff, it freezes well and tastes pretty good when it is reheated.

Pizza Hut wants YOU to try their new pizzas. So I’m giving out $20 gift cards to three winners. Just leave your name and email addy in the comments section. (And if you want a second chance to win, go to Midwestern Mommy and leave a comment there as well.) Entrants must be 18 and older and this giveaway is for those in the US. You’ve got until Saturday evening (Jan. 24th) to enter. A winner will be notified on Sunday.

Move over chips, Mama's got a new bag (of snacks!)

Kellogg's Special K line has two very, very tasty new snack products out. And just in time for those who might be tempted to toss that New Year's resolution to eat healthy or lose weight.

I was recently sent some Special K Italian Herb crackers as well as the Special K Multi-Grain crackers. I gotta tell you. Oh. My. Gawd. I LOVE these crackers.

The Multi-Grain crackers were packaged in single servings. One bag of the slightly sweet, yet salty and buttery tasting crackers contains 90 calories. My son even liked these. In fact, the crackers were is snack of choice. So he took these to school three times. And one day, when he wanted to take his lunch, I was out of bread. These crackers were a great substitute. Add a cheese stick, grapes, a milk and a cookie? You've got a nutritious lunch that takes a minute to throw together.

He wasn't as thrilled with the Italian Herb crackers but that was entirely ok by me. The taste of these crackers remind me of tomato soup. Only you get a satisfying crunch too. The flavor is zesty but not overpowering.

And actually? I had a really difficult time trying to eat only one serving. I wanted to keep eating, and eating, and eating. (And well, I did just keep eating, and eating and eating.) But hey, they too are loaded with eight grams of whole grains a serving. So its healthier and? You'll stay full longer.

My ob/gyn recently told me that in order to offset the first trimester nausea, its helpful to eat something at night before bed. I don't want to gain 60+ pounds like I did my last pregnancy, so these are the products I've been snacking on at night.

Sadly, I just finished off both boxes late last week. But both products are on this week's grocery list. Move over potato chips. Mama's got a new bag! (Of crunchy snacks.)

Blogger was compensated to write this post. The post was written on behalf of

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Manage your meds with the help of

Although I have been compensated to write this post, that fact did not affect my opinion of this service.

When I found out I was pregnant, I started panicking. Had the medications I'd been taking affected the newly growing fetus? If so, how? (Oh, my God! Oh my God! Oh my God!) It took awhile to wade through all of the info on two of the allergy meds. And what about the Ambien? Plus I take a pill for hypothyroidism. And what about the medicine I'd taken a few days ago for a nasty migraine? (Insert a bunch of "Oh my God's" here too!)

I would have LOVED to have been able to go to ONE website to get straight answers on this big issue. (Especially since I was getting conflicting info on several sites.) That was before I found out about is a site that can help you manage your family's and your medications. Registering is free and easy. And once you set up your account, you can begin listing your meds. (You don't have to know exactly how to spell the med -- type in the first few letters, and a list of meds pops out.) Chose your med, enter the dosage amount as well as a few other details. Then viola! A new page will pop up listing lots of important information about the drug as well as any known warnings and news articles for the product.

For example, I input my Armour thyroid medicine. And immediately found there are several other medications used for hypothyroidism as well. Course when I saw the user rating, I was happy to find my medication had the highest rating. (I had been wondering if I should switch to a different medication but I guess not!)

And if there are medications you are thinking about using but want to research first? You can do so here. Also, the service isn't just for prescription meds. You can obtain information on over-the-counter medications as well. (So if you're curious about that Benedryl...)

Often, when I'm at the pharmacist, I'm in a rush as is the pharmacist. is a great way to get the info I need, when I can take the time to do my research.
This post was written on behalf of

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Superbowl Prize Pack

You gotta love Super Bowl parties. Lots of friends, food, and football. Pepsi and Frito Lay have joined forces to create a Super Bowl Party Pack jammed with tons of cool stuff. The kit, valued at about $250.00 contains:

• 1 football
• 1 beverage pail
• 1 snack helmet
• 2 key chains
• 2 hats
• 2 t-shirts
• 5 Pepsi 24 pack coupons
• 5 Frito Lay coupons

You can give away the t-shirts, hats, or key chains as attendance prizes or keep for yourself. (Personally, I'd be using a keychain and hat to bribe my son to help clean the house before hand.)

I'm giving one pack away. All you have to do is leave a comment here or at between now and noon on Saturday, Jan. 17th. You must be 18 to enter and live in the United States. Winner will be drawn randomly (I write your names on a sheet of paper, deposit into a bowl and my son draws the name.) and notified by January 19th.

Ok. Now that I'm thinking of Frito Lay, I'm thinking potato chips and would some yummy, salty chips taste SO awesome right now? Mmmmm. Oh and a Pepsi. A real Pepsi. A combo of Cola-y sweetness and salt. Mmmmm....
Good luck!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Get fresh and stay fresh

I hate it when I have to throw out a half a container of grapes or box of cereal. Why? Because if we didn't eat it, that means I just overpaid for that item. And I hate to waste money, energy or food. (I come from generations of German stock who believed efficiency was next to cleanliness and godliness.)

I guess the Ziplock people felt the same way. Not only do they now have a "freshness shield" built into some of their products but they've also created a new feature on their website, called "Shelf-Life 101".

This newest feature gives you an idea of how long certain foods stay fresh as well as tips on how to keep your food as fresh as possible. How cool is that! (Especially with rising grocery costs and dwindling disposable income.) Check out this neat little page here and look in the lefthand column.