Heart Healthy Nutrition for the Holidays

I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Influence Central for DSM. I received product samples and a promotional item to thank me for my participation.

The Holiday season might seem like an unusual time to talk about heart health, but studies have shown that instances of heart attacks increase during the holiday season.  Maybe it is all the extra stress and activities, or maybe it is the fact there are too many holiday goodies being consumed!

Either way two of the biggest holiday celebrities, Mr. and Mrs. Claus have decided they should try to raise awareness and help.  Here is a video message from Mrs. Claus explaining the issues:

The statistic from Mrs. Claus is shocking – more than 80 million Americans are living with heart disease.  She wants to set a better example, and so do I.  Heart disease runs in both my and my husband’s family, and it is important that we improve our health, and set a good example for our kids, since we aren’t passing the best genes on to them!Continue Reading

Take Care of Your Dog’s Teeth with Milk-Bone Brushing Chews

This post is sponsored by Lunchbox. All opinions are my own.

Our two dogs are an important part of our family, and we naturally we worry about their health. And one of the most common problems dogs have is dental disease. This makes sense, after all dog’s teeth build up tartar just like our teeth, and they don’t go to the dentist every six months to get it scraped off. As the tartar gets worse it causes periodontal diseases which inflame the gums.

Regular brushing of a dogs’ teeth can help prevent this – but lets face it, most dogs aren’t going to sit still for that! That is why we give our dogs Milk-Bone Brushing Chews – which are just as effective as daily brushing.

Milk-Bone Brushing Chews

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Strange Magic – Poster & Trailer

This poster for Strange Magic was just released – looks fun!

strange magic

The film is a new animated film which is a fairy tale musical inspired by “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” It uses popular songs from the past six decades help tell the tale of a colorful cast of goblins, elves, fairies and imps, and their hilarious misadventures sparked by the battle over a powerful potion.Continue Reading

Beauty Gift Basket with Suave Moroccan Infusion and a Giveaway

This post sponsored by Lunchbox. All opinions are my own.

I enjoy putting together gift baskets for some of my loved ones for holiday gifts, like this Beauty Gift Basket featuring Suave Shampoo and Conditioner.

Beauty Gift Basket

Many times it is easier to think of a bunch of smaller presents, which can then be combined into one larger one. Plus it is fun to pick out cute baskets and make everything look pretty. Designing a cute presentation on a small scale like this appeals to me, and is part of the enjoyment of gift giving.  Sure you can buy ready made gift baskets, but I think putting them together myself is more special and personal.

This Beauty Basket is perfect for some of the hard to buy for people on your list. After all every one needs hair products! I featured the Suave® Moroccan Infusion Shine Shampoo & Conditioner, which you can get at BJ’s Wholesale Club, in my basket, along with some hair accessories and lip balm. I know my 21 year old daughter will love this, and she is so hard to buy presents for!  She loves how this shampoo and conditioner makes her hair feel, and she always needs more things like colorful hair ties and hair brushes. Continue Reading

Side Show on Broadway

I received complimentary tickets, all opinions are my own.

Last weekend I had the chance to attend a performance of Side Show at the St. James Theatre on Broadway, and it was an amazing experience.


The show is based on the true story of Daisy and Violet Hilton, who were co-joined twins who were very popular on the vaudeville circuit.  This seems like a kind of odd premise for a musical, but it really worked and the play presents a touching story of love and loss.  The whole theme is about searching for love and acceptance, which is something everyone can relate to.Continue Reading

Stocking Stuffers for a Bright and Healthy Smile

What are you putting in your kids’ stockings? We always go for practical things in stockings, instead of candy and more toys.  Like many kids mine are spoiled at Christmas.  We try not to give too many gifts, but once the extended family gifts pour in there is always an embarrassment of riches under the tree.  So I don’t feel guilty at all putting less desired but still useful essentials in the stockings.

Stocking Stuffers for a Bright and Healthy SmileContinue Reading

Sharp AQUOS Crystal Smartphone

I participated in an Influencer Activation Program on behalf of Influence Central for Sprint. I received a sample device to facilitate this review.

I have had the chance to review a number of Sprint smartphones over the past year, and the latest is the Sharp AQUOS Crystal. This smartphone is so sleek and elegant looking that it stands out from other phones.  It has a 5 inch edge to edge HD screen, and the clear and bright picture is amazing.


Sharp is know world wide for its unique electronics, and with this phone the have broken the mold of traditional smartphone designs.  Along with its unique and crisp look the phone has some amazing features.  The camera has advanced photo features, like “Night Catch”, which brightens the subject and background for nightime shots.  Last weekend we were in New York City, so of course we had to check out the big Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center.  The phone did a great job of capturing the tree after dark.Continue Reading

Mini Chocolate Cheesecake with Raspberries

This post is part of the SPLENDA® 365 SWEET SWAPS ™ blogger program by McNeil Nutritionals, LLC. and The Motherhood, who sent me products and compensated me for my time. Opinions, experiences and photos shared here are my own, and I hope you enjoy them.

These Mini Chocolate Cheesecake are pretty and delicious, and best of all they were made with Splenda, not sugar.

Mini Chocolate Cheesecake - I swapped Sugar for Splenda to make these tasty chocolate cheesecake covered with sugar free Chocolate Sauce and raspberries.

Swapping sugar for Splenda makes a lot of sense, because the average American consumes way too much sugar, which is one of the reasons the average American has way too large a waistline!  The 22 teaspoons of sugar eaten by the average American is more than triple the recommended amount for women, and more than double the recommended amount for men.  Small, easy changes like swapping sugar for Splenda can really add up over time.  And this holiday season is the perfect time to start making these changes, after all why wait for New Year’s to start reducing calories?Continue Reading

Night at Museum Gift Card Giveaway

I will receive a similar prize package courtesy of 20th Century Fox.

Night at the Museum opens in theaters everywhere December 19th.


In one wild and adventure-filled night Larry (Ben Stiller) spans the globe, uniting favorite and new characters while embarking on an epic quest to save the magic before it is gone forever.Continue Reading

Snowy Days and Stouffer’s Mini Meal Moments

I have been compensated as part of a social campaign for Stouffer’s with The Motherhood. The opinions are completely my own.

This time of year is so busy, it is hard to just sit back and relax and take some time for yourself, so you can get through your busy day. Stouffer’s wants to encourage you to take a mini-meal moment and enjoy their new Mac Cups, snack sized mac & cheese perfect for a mini meal moment.

Stouffer's Mac Cups

I homeschool my 15 year old son, and I thought this year would be easier than previous years, since I only have one child at home.  But it hasn’t turned out that way at all!  There are always errands to run and meetings to take my son to.  And my son’s classes like algebra and biology take quite a bit of effort and oversight from me.  So when we had our first big snowstorm of the season last week I figured it meant a quiet day at home, perfect for some me time.  One nice thing about snow storms is most things are cancelled, so we stay home!Continue Reading