One Thing Leads To Another

You never know what kinds of discussions will come up while watching television with your children. While watching a program about teams of people trying to catch fish with their bare hands (don’t ask) one team was made up of a father and daughter who owned a funeral home. My daughter didn’t understand how people could have that as a profession and that started a nice discussion about life and honor, beginnings and endings.
It’s not a topic that most people like to talk about, however I attended two funerals last weekend so this subject is fresh for me. I actually had my daughter come along with me not knowing that there would be a burial casket in the room during the ceremony. It’s difficult not to focus on the casket, for me anyway. As a way for me to escape from crying I started thinking about what kind of casket I would like. For some reason this thought process helped me from getting too emotional during the ceremony – I make no sense.
When I got home I told my husband about the afternoon and told him of my plans. I went on-line to research caskets and found categories of casket faq . He shook his head at me and went out to trim the roses. We all have our own way of tending to things.

The Digest Diet – My Beginning

My path to healthier eating and correct portion size starts today.  I’m using The Digest Diet by Liz Vaccariello.

I read about this plan in Reader’s Digest and was intrigued.  Eat foods that help release fat storage?  OK.   I looked over the foods and the recipes and they sounded, well, normal.  I kept thinking, ‘I could do this!’  And with the way I’ve been feeling lately, I need to do this.

My book arrived yesterday and I immediately made a grocery list.  For days 1 – 4 I found all the smoothie and soup ingredients at my closest Fred Meyer (Kroger for some of you).  I’ve had my first smoothie of the day, a delicious combo of Strawberry Almond.

OK – Here are my basic stats:  Height – 5’10”.  Weight:  181 lbs.  Let’s see where I’m at next Wednesday  (April 4th).

The Digest Diet – 1 Week Later

(Click to visit The Digest Diet website for all the information:   www.digestdiet.com)

(*disclaimer: My participation is not endorsed by The Digest Diet or Reader’s Digest in any way.  I have paid for this program and am sharing my experience, and my husbands, honestly.)

Green Works – Spring Cleaning

Perhaps it feels like summer where you are, or you are still fighting off the winter chill, but our calendar is showing that it’s officially Spring (in the Northern Hemisphere).  And no matter how much I may dread the idea of cleaning I’m also inspired this time of year – especially when the sun streams through the windows and it shows the layers of dust my grey skies were oh-so-kind to hide.

This season I plan to clean out cupboards, closets and the basement.  (I see a Garage Sale in our future!)  I know it’s best to keep the cleaning supplies as minimal and natural as possible and I’ve been pretty good with that over the years.  However, there are some on-the-shelf products that have natural and safe ingredients which get my household clean and help me skip the steps – i.e. = saving me time – of creating my own cleaner.

Not that laundry is the most joyful job but it does feel good when clothes are clean, right?  Yesterday I spent a lot of time turning muddy, smelly clothes into clean, fresh clothing using Green Works Laundry Detergent for Sensitive Skin.  It has a fresh, light fragrance that comes from naturally derived cleaning ingredients,no phosphates, optical brighteners or harsh chemical residue.  Nice.

If you are getting into the “spring cleaning” mode try products from Green Works.  Visit their website for a coupon and other special offers.

(*disclaimer:  I was not compensated for my review.  These opinions are truthfully my own.*)

Wife Swap

*** Thanks for the post, Kathy Shelton

They started off a long time ago with the television series Wife Swap and now they have a celebrity version of the show. I use the term celebrity loosely though because the people on the show are what you would call C List celebs at best. Nothing against them it just shouldn’t really be called Celebrity Wife Swap in my opinion but I digress. The point of the show is to teach the people in it how thankful they are for their spouses when they usually take them for granted. For two weeks the wives of the two families will trade places and live with the other family. The first week the wives have to fill the shoes of the mom who lives there and do everything the way she does things and the second week the new wife gets to take over and do things her way. Most of the time the families end up taking away some tidbit of info that they want to take home and use with their families and everyone is happy at the end. Check out Direct TV satellite to find out when Wife Swap comes on in your area.

bareMinerals Prime Time Neutralizing Primer

When it comes to beauty products I’m a dichotomy. I love the make-up aisles and love to see all the colors, products, tips and techniques. I can’t pass up looking through magazines to see what the latest tricks are and check to see if what was once listed as “tried and true” has held up over the course of time. (Maybelline Great Lash in the classic pink tube being one of them.) However, with all of my joy of make-up I don’ t like to wear a lot of make-up. I like to use the most minimal of products that will have the greatest effect. And that is why I am thrilled with my latest find from bareEscentials/bareMinerals – Prime Time Neutralizing Foundation Primer.

After years of using liquid foundation I’ve found that the powder formulas from bareMinerals work best for me and I recommend them to any and all who ask. Now I’ve found that if I want a much smoother look, using a primer is key. And NOW I’ve found a primer from bareMinerals that has a tint to neutralize any redness on my face. I can use this neutralizing primer alone and feel ready to walk out the door without using foundation. It’s very light on the skin, reduces the redness and minimizes the appearance of your pores. Terrific! If you choose to wear bareMinerals foundation over this primer you will be on your way to creating a flawless complexion. To check it out visit QVC for the bareMinerals Return to Radiance Collection. (click here)

Starting My Day

I have vowed to not begin my day by reading the headlines any more.  My spirit just can’t take it.  When I reach the computer I will start with the funny pictures, inspiring quotes, or cute little bunny pictures.  I feel I need to build my humor reserve then perhaps, I’ll take some of the “real life” happenings.  Maybe.

I’ve found a good way to bring about a laugh, and contribute to my Pinterest page, is to check-out BuzzLol.com and their Photoshop Fails.  What were some of these people thinking?  There’s the crazy weightlifter who thought we wouldn’t notice that, although one bicep has been pleasantly pumped up, the other arm is in the shadows – and skinny as anything.  Or what’s with taking a “little off the sides”?  I mean, I understand wanting to have your hips a little slimmed down, but not to the point that you don’t have hips any more.  Come on people!  We’re on to your Photoshop Fails.

Something I hadn’t thought of until I saw a page of people with the same expression, was the phenomenon of people pursing their lips out, kind of like a duckface, when they are having their picture taken.  Was there an article in Cosmo that claims ducks are really sexy and we should try to look like them?  Gee, I missed that one.

I don’t have an iPhone but I do understand auto correct and I’ve seen first hand the hysterical mess it can make of a conversation.  Love it!  If I can find a few funny autocorrect conversations in my morning, I’m good to go.
Oh, and a large coffee helps too!

Philosophy Shower Gel

philosophy  

When it comes to shower gels or bar soaps I have had to stay away from those that are highly scented. My skin is so sensitive and, unfortunately, my youngest daughter has inherited my condition.  There are times when even the “sensitive skin” products made us break out in hives.  It seemed we were doomed to a life of itchy showers.  But we have recently found a product that is surprisingly gentle, Philosophy 3 – in – 1 Shower Gel.

The texture feels incredibly luxurious, and the amount of lather is abundant.  It makes for an excellent bubble bath. I was shocked when I noticed that my skin wasn’t irritated and I wasn’t itching.  yeah!  I love the scent Inner Grace, however it seems slightly mature for an 11 year old girl so I’ll probably buy Amazing Grace next.

If you have sensitive skin and would like to try a scented shower gel give Philosophy 3 – in – 1 Shower Gel a try.

(*disclaimer:  I have not received product or compensation of any kind for my review.  I just really love this product!)

Find BabySitter or Nanny In Your Area With SittersSearch.com

For those who don’t have access to a babysitter within their family it can be difficult to find someone who is the right match for your precious darling when you need, or want, to be away from home for the evening.  It’s difficult enough to put plans together for an evening out, wouldn’t it be wonderful if finding someone you can trust to watch over your child for the night was just a click away?  There is a wonderful free on-line resource to help you find a babysitter or nanny, www.SittersSearch.com.  This service is completely free and will help you connect with babysitter’s and nannies in your area.
SittersSearch.com provides complete and comprehensive information to guide you through the process of choosing a babysitter or nanny.  If you are new to this arrangement, they provide a “Resource Library for Parents” that includes information that will help make the process less stressful.  Sometimes all we need are the right questions to ask and SittersSearch.com can help.
Not only is this a perfect service for those looking for childcare services, SittersSearch.com also helps those looking for babysitting or nanny jobs.  Visit SittersSearch.com and enter your zip code to find potential jobs in your area.  Once you have the job you will find website resources to help you through potentially stressful situations; “I Want Mommy!”, “What to do if a child gets sick” and many more helpful tips to make your job more enjoyable.
There are many wonderful resources available to you at SittersSearch.com .

Newman's Own Organics For Pets

I’ll never forget the day I was in the Pet Food aisle and a woman saw what I was purchasing and said to me “You’re not going to feed that garbage to your cat, are you?”  Um… yikes!  She wasn’t in my face, but her words were powerful enough that I took a step back.  Feeding garbage to my cat?  Let’s really look at this label, ok Ann?

Well, that event changed how I shopped for pet food.  If I check out the labels on things I purchase for my family to eat, then I need to really check out the ingredients listed on the pet food as well.  Recently my dog and cats have been trying Newman’s Own Organics Premium Pet Food, 95% grain free – rated USDA Organic, and let’s say so far, so good.

In all honesty our Chocolate Lab enjoys just about everything except some vegetables (red pepper, broccoli) and hot sauce – no surprise on the hot sauce! – so switching to a new dog food hasn’t been all that difficult for our Benny.  He did notice that the smell was different however, with one bite he was on his way to enjoying the rest of his meal.  He was in good spirits the rest of the night and his system responded nicely.  (That is code for dog owners meaning: no bad gas.  You know what I’m talking about!)

My cats have been a bit more finicky, for my fellow cat owners there’s no surprise there, am I right?  It took two attempts at introducing Newman’s Own Organic cat food to Maddy and Phoebe then they were just fine.  They were ready for long naps after their meals were playful when they woke. 

It feels good knowing that their meals are healthier and that I’m providing food that will help sustain their well being.  (They act happier too.  Tasty treats have that effect, don’t they ;-> ).  If you are interested in finding healthy foods for your pet please consider the Premium Pet Food line available from Newman’s Own Organics.

(*disclosure:  I received Newman’s Own Organics Pet Food for review.  My opinions, and observations of my pets behavior, are truthful.)

L'Oreal Paris Infallible Eyeliner Review

Love!

Love, love, love this eyeliner.

If you are looking for an eyeliner that is easy to apply, is smudge proof for hours, and removes easily with normal make-up remover than you will want L’Oreal Paris Infallible Eyeliner.

The reason I chose L’Oreal Infallible Eyeliner was because of the claim of “Up to 16 hours of Smudge-Resistant Color” on the packaging. I was getting very tired of my eyeliner appearing on my upper eyelid after about an hour. I was using other products just to keep my eyeliner in place. Too many products and steps for me. I want to use the least amount of supplies with the most amount of results and L’Oreal Infallible Eyeliner does the trick.

I thoroughly enjoy that a smudger and a sharpener are conveniently placed on the opposite end of this eyeliner. It’s all there. The eyeliner tip is smooth, almost glides like a liquid eyeliner, but much more forgiving if your hand slips a bit. (I’m not practiced, or patient, enough for liquid eyeliner.) Infallible glides on for precise application close to the lash line and from that you can broaden your liner if you wish.

I highly recommend L’Oreal Paris Infallible Eyeliner.

(*disclaimer: I was not compensated in any way. This was my personal purchase and personal opinion.)

Latchkey Children

***Thanks for the guest post by Donn Schroeder***

When I first started thinking about what I was going to do with my children after I went back to work they were much younger than they are now. Now they are getting a bit older and want to be independent and the thought of going to an after school care facility is mortifying to them. We started having the discussion on whether or not my husband and I thought they were old enough and mature enough to go home from school alone every day when we are away at work. I think that they can easily handle themselves around the house with no problem but the thing that worried me about the whole thing is people knowing that they were home alone with no adults. All you would have to do is watch them get off the bus every day and you would know. Luckily our ADT security system helped make the decision a little bit easier. The boys know how to use the system and can arm it after they get home. I feel much more relieved knowing that they have that extra layer of protection when we can’t be there.