Shutterfly – Perfect Way To Share This Season

I have found that when it comes to Christmas cards my husband and I are on different levels.  He absolutely enjoys creating the annual newsletter, sharing our family news from the past year and wishing our family and friends a joyful holiday season.

Well, I agree on the ‘wishes of a joyful holiday season’, it’s the “newsletter” part that gets me.  And isn’t that odd?  I like to write… ev-ery-day!  (Add this issue to the “Ann makes no sense” File).

What I do love to do is share pictures.  When you send photos of your family the reaction you will most likely hear is “I can’t believe how big they’re getting!”  This had better be directed at the children ;->   And for those that like to display Christmas cards, a photo card looks a lot better on a mantel then a newsletter, I’m just sayin’.

Last year I used the on-line service at Shutterfly.com for our Christmas photo cards and was overjoyed at the results.  You have so many designs and layouts to choose from that you are sure to find some style to your liking.  The finished product was clean and crisp and helped up present our best to our family and friends.  They also help you create photo gifts and calendars.

 See how Shutterfly.com can help you create beautiful holiday memories.   www.shutterfly.com

5×7 Folded Card
View the entire collection of cards.

Apothederm Hydrating Eye Cream Review & Special Offer

I’ve been searching for an eye cream that will help with under-eye puffiness and hopefully buff the fine lines and wrinkles that have a habit of showing up even when I tell them they’re not welcome.  Recently I was given the opportunity to try Hydrating Eye Cream from the skin care line Apothederm.

I found this product to feel cool under my eyes with no stinging to my sensitive skin or leaving a residue.  I was able to apply my make-up with out the product sticking or leaving my make-up looking cakey. 
After two weeks I found a slightly noticeable difference with my under-eye puffiness.  Also I found the Hydrating Eye Cream to do the trick for smoothing my fine lines. Hydrating Eye Cream comes in a 0.5 oz bottle and retails for $40.00.
If you would like to give products from this skin care line a try, the lovely people at Apothederm are offering the readers of Ann Again… and again Reviews $10 off ANY product just by using the code: TENOFF at check-out (expires 12/31/11).  
Visit Apothederm and see what this skin care can do for you.  http://apothederm.com/

Wii "Go Vacation" Review

 

My girls are having a blast playing Go Vacation on the Wii.  In the beginning they didn’t seem to be too interested in this new game, so I started my own Wii adventure while they went on about their business.  Let me just say it didn’t take long until I heard the word, “Can I play too?”.  (My plan worked ;->)

We’ve been playing Wii “Go Vacation” for 3 weeks now and their interest doesn’t seem to be waning.  It’s easy to see why.  Go Vacation takes you to an island that hosts 4 resorts, all resorts have different activities and challenges and you collect points along the way.  There are games that require you to get up and move your body, so I was thrilled to see that my girls weren’t going to be sitting on the couch while they were watching their virtual selves scuba dive, go horseback riding and rollerblading.  There’s activity going on and you get to be part of the action.

Go Vacation for the Wii has activities that allow you to use Wii accessories including the Wii Balance Board, the Wii Zapper and Wii MotionPlus.  We don’t have all of those accessories and our remotes work just fine.  Go Vacation from Namco Bandai is an excellent choice for gift giving this holiday season. 

(*disclosure: I was given a copy of Go Vacation for review. My opinions are truthfully my very own.*)

A Way To Find Personal Peace During The Holidays

During this time of the year many outside elements can wreak havoc on your sense of well-being.  For me, living in the Pacific Northwest, this is the season to acclimate to darker, rainy days and nights.  Less sunshine can really do a number on your mental state. Also, we are coming upon the holidays which can be tremendously joyful, or tremendously stressful.  More often then not, it’s a mixture of both. 

I do my best to keep myself within the moment, to not get too flustered about “to-do” lists, and to exercise and take my Vitamin D to stave off S.A.D. (Seasonal Affectiveness Disorder).  I have found a site that helps me in another way to find calmness and stay focused, Humanistic Spirituality.

While at the website of Humanistic Spirituality you can choose to listen to guided meditations which include audio sessions on well being and awareness of aggression.  I find these extremely helpful in making me aware of my energy and my part in my responses to situations.

Spiritual Development is important to me.  I want the holidays (and ALL days :-> ) to be joyful and lived well.  It’s nice to have this “check-in” at the tip of my fingers.

-417 Nail Care Review and Giveaway!

I have a little knowledge to pass along.  Minus 417 (-417) is the lowest point on the planet Earth.  That it is situated at 1,373 ft (-417 meters) below sea level, where time stands still.  Did you know that?  Time standing still huh?  Well I think that’s a great name for a skin care line, wouldn’t you agree? ;->

Known in Europe for their skin care since 2003, -417 is being introduced to America for the first time. -417 is a unique collection of Skin-Care Products based on natural active components and select minerals from the lowest place in the world – the Dead Sea. -417   I have been fortunate to try their Professional Nail Care Kit and I’m happy that I get to pass a Professional Nail Care Kit along to one lucky reader of Ann Again… and again Reviews.

This kit includes:

  • Cuticle oil (30 ml.)
  • Foot & nail moisturizer (50 ml.)
  • Hand & nail moisturizer (50 ml.)
  • Nail buffer & Nail filer

Retail Value:  $40.00

With a very subtle, completely intoxicating, fragrance the hand and foot moisturizers are paraben and mineral oil free.  I want this lightly scented lotion as a body moisturizer.  Just love it!  Another favorite in the collection is the nail buffer.  Guidelines of use are printed on one side so you’ll receive lovely, shiny nails every time.

To win this lovely -417 Professional Nail Kit follow the rules below:



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Aeropostale Zip Up Hoodies

It started last year, my daughter’s preference for hoodies.  And not just any hoodies, Aeropostale hoodies.  I’ve done my best to stay in the loop as far as what’s popular in Teen fashion and culture but I had to research this brand and honestly, let me tell you, I am so happy with the Aeropostale line.

I have found that Aeropostale zip up hoodies can take a lot of wear and tear.  My daughter has worn hers to summer camps and beach trips and the quality of Aeropostale has stood up to the elements and through many, many washings/dryings.

A huge plus for me are the amazing deals Aeropostale has through out the year, not just for holidays.  I’ve even found a few cute things for myself.  bonus!  Now my youngest daughter is finding that some Aeropostale styles are pretty cute.  To find an Aeropostale near you, or check-out their easy-to-navigate website, www.aeropostale.com .

BeautyMint

If you feel your skin isn’t handling the changing of the seasons very well it’s a perfect time for you to change your skin care regime. I have been given a new skin care product a try and would like to share information with you on BeautyMint.

Founded by skin care expert Nerida Joy, and supported by Jessica Simpson, the BeautyMint skin care line gives you a personalized regime suited just for you.  Visit their site and you will take a free skin consultation.  With regard to your answers you will receive products designed for your skin type.

I have been using BeautyMint Essential Cleanser and the Ultra Replenishing Serum for 2 weeks.  The cleanser is a clear, unscented gel that left my skin feeling clean.  I appreciated the serum’s light texture however, I still needed a moisturizer over this serum.  I have delicate skin and found neither product to be irritating. 

Visually I like the clean look of the products packaging, it seems to prepare you for serious skin care.  And that’s what I’m looking for.  If you are too, then visit the BeautyMint site and take the free personal skincare consultation. Experience advanced skin care designed just for you.

http://bmnt.co/uabnIp

(*disclosure:  As I said, I received product for review.  The opinions are truthfully mine – truly! :-> )

Sock Ons – So Cute!

From the file of ‘Why didn’t I think of this?’ comes a very clever idea to help keep baby’s socks on their very busy, little feet – Sock Ons.

These are sure to be a hit at the Baby Shower.  With over 10 colors, and a cute sneaker design, to choose from you can accessorize your baby’s outfit for every day of the week.  Depending on the color/design sizes range from 0 – 12 months.

Sold on-line, and at children’s boutique stores for $5.99.  Click here to find where Sock Ons are sold.

(*disclosure:  I was given a pair of sock ons to review.  My opinions are truthful and my very own.)

Do You Know Your Score?

With all of our drama about cars breaking down, the not-worth-the-cost-of-repair-case and ‘What to do next?’ thoughts, I had a very specific resolution to this car situation in mind, ‘We need a new car.  What can we afford?’  I knew that credit would come into play so I wondered what our credit score was. I did some internet searching (while crying to my Facebook friends about our car situation) and found a site for a free credit score, FreeScore.com.

I was so curious how we measured up with our credit score.  I wondered what our families past Christmases and birthday parties had done to our “number”.  I was happy with the ease of navigation at FreeScore.com.  Credit scores do matter, no matter how much we would like them not too.

I grew up learning the importance of having a budget, (thanks to my mom!), the idea of being aware of the money you have then what you can spend.  But that darn credit. It is so enticing!  After a few years of living on my own I almost got carried away but, I kept it together.  A site like FreeScore.com can help keep you in check.  Do yourself a favor and look online for a free credit score offer.

Finding Help From The Steam Team of Texas

For my dear readers in the area of Austin, Texas I want to share information on a company that will help you get your house in spit-spot shape for the holidays, The Steam Team of Texas.

The people of The Steam Team of Texas can help you remove pet odors from carpets and smoke smells from your home.  I will never forget the time, (and neither will my husband!) when I tried to burn what was supposed to be a hard resin incense and it became a smoke nightmare.  The Fire Dept. came to our place, my neighbors were freaked out – oh man, it was embarrassing.  And the worst part was the smoke damage.  Finding a team of professionals who can clean and remove the smell is fantastic.

My dear friend’s dog got into a tussle with a skunk recently and could really use the help of skunk odor removal austin services.  (I think our whole neighbor could use this service.  It’s amazing how powerful one little skunk can be!)

Please contact SteamTeam.com – http://www.thesteamteam.com/ – for your cleaning needs.

Happy Feet Two – Prize Pack Giveaway!

The adorable movie Happy Feet has spawned a sequel, opening soon on November 18th, Happy Feet Two.  Returning in this penguin tale are the voices of Robin Williams and Elijah Wood.  There are so many big names in this movie I can’t wait to check it out.  Matt Damon and Brad Pitt as krill?! I’m there.

I have a sweet prize pack full of themed gifts that will please any one excited about the release of Happy Feet Two:

Let’s see, there’s:

  • Key chains
  • T-shirt
  • Temporary tattoos
  • Mini puzzles
  • Activity books
  • Posters 
  • Tote Bag

Would you like a chance to win this Happy Feet Two Prize Pack?  Here’s what you do:



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Clymer Manuals For The D.I.Y. In Your Life

D.I.Y.  = Do It Yourself.

“Honey, don’t call the repair guy, I’ll fix it myself!” 

Do you have one of these energetic people in your life?  Or, are you the one who likes to fix things?  If that’s the case, I’ve found a great site for you to check out, Clymer Manuals.

If you would like to be guided how to repair your car, or your ATV, Clymer Manuals has quite the selection of guides to choose from.  And with winter weather upon some of us they even have a selection of snow mobiles.  How handy!  They also carry books on power equipment and boat repair.  And you can’t beat the convenience of their On-Line repair manuals.

My city is a very popular bicycle town and although there are plenty of reliable bike repair shops in my area, there’s something to be said for getting your hands dirty, in this case very greasy, and knowing that you have figured out what makes your machine work and fixing a problem yourself.

I think a repair book from Clymer Manuals would make an excellent gift for the D.I.Y. person in your life.

Use Become.com For Your Shopping This Season

 ‘Tis the season!  (Well, like it or not, it is.) And I’m getting organized with my shopping this year.  We most definitely have a budget and I have no choice but to stick to it.  I have ideas of what my family would like and I don’t want to spend a lot of time searching for the best price so I’ve turned to the internet to help me on my shopping way.  I’ve discovered a site called Become.com that will help me find items and compare prices. Love it!

While searching for a new sweater coat I was directed to the Ruby Red Clothing Line.  Wonderful, stylish choices in coats and accessories.  I was offered styles from various sites like The Pashmina Store, Boscovs and Woolrich.  And oh-my-goodness, they showed a pair of Christian Louboutin shoo-o-o-oes.  Wow!

I was drawn to offerings at 52 Weekends Clothing.  There was a pair of Dockers that would be perfect for my husband.  (He keeps fighting the flat-front style but I keep telling him it’s more flattering and it’s “in” Honey.  It-is-“in” :-> ).

Something I’m not completely into, but my husband enjoys very much, is camping.  I found some hearty vests that would suit him perfectly for the great outdoors at Cheap Air Soft Vests.  There were styles just right for the hunter in your life and for those that take their paintball very seriously. 

Save gas $$ and use Become.com for your holiday shopping needs.

A Putty Pooping Dog – As A Toy?!?

I can’t believe this.  I just can’t.  Is this an SNL skit?  Come on… really?

Doggie Doo – A game by Goliath:

 
You “win” by collecting doggie’s doo?!?  

Now, maybe I should be embracing this reverse psychology here.  I can just see my life after bringing this game into our home.  ‘Hey Lily, will you go pick-up after Benny?’  “Yes Mom!  You BET!  Winner!!!”

Um… nope.  Not gonna happen.

Getting Ready To Self-Promote

I have a small business as a Scentsy Consultant.  I love the product that I sell and am becoming more comfortable reaching out to others about what I have to offer.  That’s not easy for me, I’m not big on “self-promotion”.  Every time I see a video of a great salesperson I’m always thinking, ‘Good for them.  But that will never be me.’

One way I’m getting over my uneasiness regarding promotion is by signing up to show at local bizarre’s.  My daughters’ school is having one soon so I’m getting ready.  My work history includes promoting at conventions, (and no – I wasn’t draped over a car or boat wearing sequins or sparklers ;-> ) I know what it’s like to stand around on concrete floors for hours so I’ve been looking into logo mats, and to add some pizzazz perhaps a logo canopy.

If you are going to partake in these kinds of events it’s a very good idea to research trade show flooring.  I’m sorry but no layer of Dr. Scholl’s is going to help when I’m on hour 5 of standing.  I’m finding the benefits of trade show carpet as well.

What do you know?  I may just get into this “self-promotion” after all!

Create Jobs For USA Initiative – Take Part!

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I have a small business.  Recently BlogHer shared information on a new initiative, beginning November 1st, that will help small businesses succeed which in turn will help America succeed.  Small businesses employ over half of all private-sector workers*.  If they are strong and growing, so are we – Americans.  The problem is, today more than one in three small businesses can’t get the funding they need to succeed. Together we can change this!

“Create Jobs For USA” is a new program supported by Starbucks Chairman and CEO Howard Shultz.  Partnering with Mr. Shultz is the Opportunity Finance Network, an organization of community lending institutions set up to provide financing to communities that need our help. To launch this project the Starbucks foundation is donating $5,000,000. 

To find out more about this incredible program you can listen in to a 15 minute conversation between Howard Shultz and BlogHer’s Lisa Stone November 1st 11:00 am Pacific/2:00 pm Eastern.  To access the conversation please dial:

Participant Number: 877-698-0629 
Conference Code: 23564006
Have a question you’d like answered – please submit it here, and you’ll get credit on the call: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?formkey=dEx5MVFqcG9qOWxVSjlIVjh5SkpyYUE6MQ  

Also, they are using the #createjobsforusa hashtag to help spread the word on twitter – if you do tweet, include @blogher so they can retweet!

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* US Small Business Administration

(~~Disclaimer:  I was informed by BlogHer of this program and choose to spread the word. No financial compensation was exchanged.~~)