Friday, May 22, 2015

Relaxing Me Time with #KoboGloHD #ReadMore #ReadAnywhere

I am part of the PTPA Brand Ambassador Program with Kobo and I received Compensation as part of my affiliation with this group. The opinions on this blog are my own.

Ever since I was Mary's age, I have always loved reading. It's magical to open a book and read it, especially when it takes you to a far off land. But even more magical about reading a book and is holding one and smelling it. Plus I love the feel of pages under my fingers. I'm sure I'm not the only person like that so when I was asked to use the Kobo Glo HD for a week instead of books, I was a little unsure. I really do love the feel of books so it took a lot for me to replace my books with it. 

When it came, it was very easy to setup. All I needed was my Wifi connection and then I could login to the Kobo store. Then I picked the books I wanted and they were ready on my device. Since I'm a classics person, I loaded the book with about 8 classics for Mary and myself. 

The Kobo store also has kid's books as well but the Kobo Gl HD isn't in color so if you're looking for a picture book, it will be in black and white. I was a bit disappointed in that myself since I planned to let Mary use it for homeschool learning on the go. But without color, it's a bit hard to decipher the kid's books.

So instead of focusing only on kid's books that have pictures, I have decided to use the Kobo Glo HD as a traveling book report for Mary. Right now I have Alice's Adventures in Wonderland on there for her and she can use it while we're in the car going to field trips. Since the battery can last up to an entire month on one charge, I don't have to worry about remembering my charger when we're on the go. 

Another fun feature the Kobo Glo HD has is that when you turn it off, it will leave up what book you left off on reading and how much more you have to go. The above picture is when the device was completely powered off so I was fascinated with that.

There are a lot of positive things about the Kobo Glo HD, especially since you can store up to 3,000 books in your library on it. So you won't have to lug around a bunch of heavy books anymore. And you can be reading multiple books at the same time on it too. So if the kids are reading something, the next time you get it you can go to your book in the library too. You can also download the Kobo app as well and read anywhere from any device too so that's another plus.

Some of the negative things I discovered included that it's not in color so that's a drawback for me. I love color and the picture of a book on the cover usually draws me in. I also wish they had more choices for children in their library for nonfiction learning books. This would compliment homeschooling field trips so great if they had some nonfiction books to learn about subjects as well.

Overall I was impressed with the Kobo Glo HD and I plan to continue using it for Mary's book reports.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Giving the Gift of Sight #EyeGiveBack #ad

Did you know one in four children has an undiagnosed vision problem? Right now when you purchase individual vision insurance from VSP Direct™ as a gift, a child in need receives a free eye exam and glasses. That means when you give the Gift of Sight from VSP, you give twice. Find out more at Thanks to VSP for sponsoring this post.

Mary has always been my pride and joy ever since the day she was born. I've always said that I want to do everything I can for her and give her the things I never had. I think most parents go through that when they have children. 

For me, growing up my eyes were very important. I started wearing glasses when I was Mary's age because I couldn't see the board in school anymore. At first I didn't really know what was going on other than my eyes were blurry when I looked at something far away. But when I had to start sitting in the back of the class and I couldn't see what was going on, my parents took me to the eye doctor. Ever since that day, I've worn glasses.

Since I started needing glasses at such an early age, I decided it was time to take Mary to the eye doctor to make sure she was seeing correctly. But I had never thought of vision insurance for her so she didn't have any. And that's why I gifted her with VSP individual vision insurance.

At first she was a little scared to see what goes on at an eye doctor but after I reassured her that I go every year and I'm still alive, she wasn't too scared anymore!

Of course me being a paranoid mom, I was making sure all her answers during the exam were correct which they were. And the doctor was very nice and explained everything to us as well. She even had a colorblind test which she passed. Did you know more girls are colorblind than boys?

Part of the exam was when they put a strong beam of light into Mary's eyes to see the back of them. After that she said the entire room looked pink! But her eyes were very healthy which was great.

Right now if you give the gift of sight to someone you love, you give twice. When you purchase a vision insurance plan as a gift through December 31, 2015*, VSP will donate an eye exam and glasses to a child in need, up to a total retail value of over $115,000. How amazing is that? I remember when I was a kid I used to donate my old glasses in a box that was in my eye doctor's office. I love giving back and that is a wonderful way to do it. Your eyes are so important and we have to make sure to take care of them.

If you're thinking about getting vision insurance, I urge you to try out VSP, especially with their give back campaign currently going on. Also make sure to check out VSP's video on this campaign as well.

Perfect Picnic Recipes for Spring #SpringPicnic

This is a sponsored post with Lunchbox. All opinions are my own.

With the weather getting warmer it’s a great time to get outside and enjoy some good food with friends and family. Celebrate this spring with a picnic or fun gathering and fresh recipes from some of your favorite brands.
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Check out these meal ideas from Lipton, I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter, and Hellmann’s that are perfect for spring:

Main Courses: 
Orange-Sage Pork Chops
Thai Turkey Lettuce Wraps
Succulent Grilled BBQ Chicken

Side Dishes: 
Buffalo Two-Potato Salad
Sauteed Kale & Red Onion
Cranberry-Almond Brussels Sprouts

White Chocolate Cranberry Cookies
Bittersweet Pecan Brownies with Caramel Sauce
Cinnamon-Glazed Fruit Kabobs

Watermelon Agua Fresca
Patriotic Tea Punch
Triple Lemon Drop

Have I wet your appetite yet? All these amazing recipes can be found in one place, on the Sam's Club website.

Here's a sneak peak at one of my favorites, the Patriotic Tea Punch!

4 cups – water
2 cups – cranberry juice or pomegranate juice
1/3 cup – Lipton® Lemon Sweetened Iced Tea Mix
1 – medium red delicious apple or Gala apple, sliced
1 cup – halved small strawberries, leaving hulls intact
1 cup – fresh blueberries

Combine water, juice and Lipton® Lemon Sweetened Iced Tea Mix in pitcher.
Add fruit; chill 1 hour or until ready to serve.
Serve over ice and garnish, if desired, with additional skewered fruit and mint.

Which recipe would you like to make on a picnic?

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Mary and Roo Sharing A Meal Together

“I’m serving my dog Cesar® home delights™ as part of a sponsored series with Socialstars. #CesarHomeDelights

Last month I shared with you just how much Roo has enjoyed eating Cesar® home delights™. In the year that we’ve had him, he’s been a very picky dog when it comes to eating. He doesn’t eat dry dog food unless there is literally nothing else around to eat. So since his track record wasn’t too great, I wasn’t sure how he would initially take Cesar® home delights™. But ever since he tasted his first one, he’s been hooked. Now when we’re in the supermarket, we buy him about 30 at a time because it’s all he will eat now! His own personal favorite is the Beef Stew and it’s understandable because it looks just like “people food”.

I’m not kidding when I say it looks like “people food”. I made a homemade beef stew for my daughter to have one day and other than the amount of broth, they looked almost the same. Roo’s food actually looked like it had more meat in it too. Plus you could even see the vegetables in his stew like the carrots and peas. Never in a million years did I ever think I could get my dog to eat carrots and peas. This is definitely gourmet wet dog food.

Since Mary and Roo both had some beef stew to eat, they decided to have a kid and doggy lunch date together. And I can safely say that both enjoyed their date very much.

If you have a picky eating dog that really prefers people food to dog food, I would suggest letting them try Cesar® home delights™. It’s just like giving them a stew and it’s much better for them than real people food. The delicious looking meaty chunks are just one of the elements that make Cesar® home delights™ a tasty treat for your dog.

Cesar® home delights™ became available nationally in local stores on April 1st so make sure to look for them! I’ve already been able to find them in my local supermarket and usually the shelves are almost empty so that means they’re already very popular!

You can also follow Cesar® home delights™ on their social channels here:

Disclosure: Photos include Cesar® home delights™ Trademarks of Mars, Incorporated 2015

Tips for Keeping Your Clothes Looking New

I am a Dryel Ambassador. All opinions are my own.

Have you ever wondered just how to keep your clothes looking new for longer than a few days after you buy them? There's nothing worse than buying new clothes to have them be ruined by the first wash.

In a recent interview with Dan Lawson, stylist on The Good Wife, Dan provided us with some tips on how to keep your clothes looking brand new for much longer.

  • How Can You Keep Your Clothes Looking Their Best?
Run a lint roller over clothes & check for small repairs like buttons daily. Let pants hang long rather than folded over a hanger to avoid creases right at the knee. Also turn garments inside out to allow them to get air to the inside which helps freshen them up. Dryel can also be used in the dryer to remove daily grime from all day wearing or stains.
  • Are There Any Alternatives When It Comes To Garments That Are Dry-Clean Only?
Dryel is actually an excellent alternative to dry-cleaning. Besides the terrific smell you are left with when you are done, it removes stains and body oils as well as freshens up the garment while letting the garment maintain it’s shape and color.
  • How do you keep the various fabrics you use from fading, shrinking or stretching?
Certainly proper hanging/storing/folding are key. Keep the knits off the hanger!!! And remember, the less cleaning you do helps keep away “the evil three” - fading, shrinking and stretching! Whether dry-cleaning or washing, your clothes suffer the consequences of regular cleaning. A product like Dryel keeps your clothes from suffering the effects of “the evil three” while saving you time and money.

What are some of your tips for keeping clothes looking new longer?

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