Thursday, July 24, 2014

Enough: 10 Things We Should Be Telling Teenage Girls Book Giveaway


I think know it is so very cool when a fellow blogger becomes a published author. In 2012, I actually did read the blog post by Kate Conner- Ten Things I Want to Tell Teenage Girls, a post that received over 2 million hits in two weeks. A post that has now resulted in a book. A book that tells teenage girls that: 

You are beautiful. You are valuable. You are enough.

I don't even have a teenage daughter yet, but I do have a teenage niece and my son does like teenage girls. Two years ago when God called me in to work with HIS children in HIS church, I began to see what an influence I can/do have in the lives of HIS children. Kate identified in this book 10 things that these girls need to hear today from someone who loves her. This book is so easy to read. Kate is funny, relational, and honestly I had many been there done that moments throughout the book. Shocking. I know.

I texted the following pictures of the book to my cousin and BFF:




I absolutely LOVE this passage. We can't shelter our daughters/teens from everything. Teach them with "a filter". The Aristotle quote will adorn my cousin's high school English classroom this Fall.

Kate is a former youth-worker, wife to a college minister, and a young mom in her twenties, Conner stands squarely in generational gap, the perfect place from which to bridge it. Conner offers herself as a translator, helping you to speak your teenager’s language and equipping you with a fresh perspective from which to engage your teenage girl—one that may enable her to truly hear your heart (and your wisdom) for the first time since puberty.

One of my readers is going to get their very own copy of this book. All you have to do is tell me you in the easy Rafflecopter entry form who you will share the wisdom of this book with. Bonus entries are available. 

Here’s the official website for the book: http://www.bhpublishinggroup.com/products/enough/

Check out all of Kate’s social media sites here:
FB: https://www.facebook.com/KateElizabethConner
Twitter: https://twitter.com/kateeconner
Instagram: http://instagram.com/kateelizabethconner
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/kateconner/

 photo BlogSignature_zpsaaa2dccc.png

"Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.

Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification. This Giveaway is open to U.S. & Canada only.a Rafflecopter giveaway

First Things First/Moon Pie Family Giveaway




Summer is all about family and spending quality time with the ones you love. And the more skills you develop the more time you invest in your family and your relationships. First Things First (FTF) is an award winning not-for-profit organization dedicated to strengthening families. The website and online resources are AMAZING!

I was asked by one of my blog partners Partners Hub to watch 5 FTF videos and to pick my favorite to share with my readers. First off, I just want to say I loved them all. Each one spoke to me. My absolute favorite though was this one: 



There is nothing like a Daddy/Daughter relationship. I was just watching some home videos earlier this week of my husband and daughter. So sweet, and almost anytime I go to photograph the two she always wants to kiss his cheek. She loves him. He loves her. WE need more dates! She needs to see her parents date more and she needs a few Daddy/Daughter dates.


What do you think about the video? Tell me on the easy Rafflecopter form below and you will be entered to win a

MoonPie / First Things First Family Prize Pack, which includes: -His and Hers MoonPie T-shirts (2 Large T-shirts) and 2 Boxes of MoonPies.

I'm thinking an RC Cola and a Moon Pie would make an excellent date! 

About First Things First
First Things First (FTF) is an award winning not-for-profit organization dedicated to strengthening families in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

FTF is a resource that collaborates with and is supported by a broad cross-section of community organizations, groups and individuals.

FTF accomplishes it mission through meaningful media messaging and skill building classes.

Did you know:
• 24 million children are growing up in homes without their biological fathers.
• Only 30% of divorces are due to infidelity, addiction or abuse, 70% of divorces are due to couples feeling disconnected.
• Couples who manage to devote time specifically to one another at least once a week are markedly more likely to enjoy high-quality relationships and lower divorce rates, compared to couples who do not devote as much couple time to one another.
• Fathers provide unique benefits to their daughters through their active and positive presence from the time of birth all the way through adulthood.

 photo BlogSignature_zpsaaa2dccc.png

Disclosure: Many thanks to PartnersHub & FTF for providing the prize for this giveaway. Each household is only eligible to win One (1) First Things First Moon Pie Prize Pack via blog reviews and giveaways. Only one entrant per mailing address per giveaway. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you will not be eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Ranch Style Pretzels Recipe

Today I walked into my kitchen and found this.


A split down the middle, opened bag of broken pretzels. Further down in my snack bucket I found some of its cousins in a ziploc bag- poor forgotten pretzel sticks.

For the love of snacks. For the love of my grocery bill this summer. Can we please quit wasting food? I mentioned in a post earlier this week that one of my favorite things to pack when we go to ball games is pretzels. So I decided to go ahead and prepare a fun twist on this snack for this weekend's games. 

Ranch Style Pretzels.

I bet they don't last past today, it's rainy.  It just takes 4 simple ingredients. 



I didn't have a full bag of pretzels, so I added popcorn to mine after I baked. Also, I ALWAYS mess up and grab the wrong Ranch mix. This one tastes just fine. Enjoy!

 photo BlogSignature_zpsaaa2dccc.png

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Ideas for Fundraising and Surviving Extracurricular Activities


Extracurricular activities can be expensive. Not only the cost of the activities, but the cost of going to the games, concessions, and other expenses that may arise.

My son has been involved in sports since he was in 1st grade. My daughter has been in ballet since she was three. He is now 13, she is 7. To be honest, the cost of these activities are very hard on our budget. Especially lately. My son this year decided to narrow his sports down to only one and focus on basketball. He was asked to play on a summer tournament team. The estimated cost is around $1000. The cost includes practice gyms, uniforms, coaching fees, tournament fees, and insurance. Hello, I lost my major source of income the minute school was out. The teacher I sit for does not bring her baby for me to watch during the summer months. Imagine that.

So rather than sell my kidneys, plasma and my children’s vital organs in order for him to live out his team’s aspiring dreams of NBA stardom. I get creative.

I created a board on Pinterest called Fundraising of course and started my research. I needed something that he and possibly even his team could get involved in. After all, if these boys want to play I think they are old enough to work along with us parents to reach that goal.

Here are a few ideas that I passed along to the team mom for possible use now and in the future.

1. Sonic Community Cards- sell for $5 each 100% profit. Each card has a minimum value of $17. 
Who needs a card or ten? These make great teacher gifts! I can mail. 

4. Restaurant nights. Below is a list, certainly not all inclusive. Most of these you don't have to be present for, you just make sure the word is out that your team/organization is holding the fundraiser and either send a flyer or have them mention your organization to get a percentage of the before tax ticket value. You will of course need to organize and consult with your local restaurant manager beforehand for arrangements.
Applebee’s
Arby’s
Cheesecake Factory
Chili’s
Chipotle
Fuddruckers
Outback Steakhouse
Panda Express
Panera
Red Robin
Subway
T.G.I.Friday’s
On the Border
Papa John’s

5. Banner- Sponsor banners. Get 10 logos for the banner at $100 each... Bam $1000. Get the banner company to in kind donate with their logo then you are not out of pocket any money..

6. Big item donation/raffle. ex: iPad, vehicle, Playstation, etc.

7. Host a tournament

8. Carwash

There are a lot of fantastic ideas on my Pinterest board, but probably our best resource was right under my nose. In addition to #1 above, I already crafted Spirit Flip Flops for proud sports moms and girls who play sports. So, I used my Facebook and Instagram to get the word out and my fingers got busy. See my FlipFlop board or my Facebook album for more of my work.  So far my son has raised about $200 on just FlipFlops alone. (I keep $5 of every $15 pair to reimburse myself for expenses)  Let me know if I can make you a pair or three! 


How do I keep actual game attendance costs at a minimum? Obviously, there are a few expenses that are beyond control like spectator tournament entry fees. So far these have been up to $7 per person per day- two to three day tournaments. Ouch. I can control expenses such as concessions and food. I am a sports bag Moma. Snacks and drinks are ready to go. Some of my favorite snacks to pack are pretzels, crackers, grapes, string cheese and bottled water. 



Another thing that I am preparing for are the out of town tournaments. Offers.com has excellent go to savings and rebates on hotels. I will definitely be utilizing these savings. What about gasoline? Do you have a local supermarket that partners with a fuel center to save at the pump? I do. I earn 3 points for every $50 I spend in groceries in a single or multiple transaction before tax at my local Reasors grocery store. This is a 3 cent savings per gallon at the pump, with no limit as to how much I can accumulate. The points expire after 60 days though.

These are only a few of my fundraising and money saving ideas as a sports mom. Maybe some of these ideas can help your team, club or organization out.  I would love to hear other frugal suggestions and ideas that you have tried.


 photo BlogSignature_zpsaaa2dccc.png

Disclosure: I am not being compensated by Offers.com, Reasors or any of the restaurants mentioned in this this post. Portions of this post may appear as a guest post on the Offers.com blog at a future date. 

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

The Love Dare For Parents Book Giveaway



Do you remember the movie Fireproof? The one in which Kirk Cameron was a fireman and fought to save his marriage? The movie was based on the international best-selling marriage book The Love Dare by authors Stephen and Alex Kendrick. 

The Kendrick brothers have teamed up again to bring The Love Dare for Parents. 

The Love Dare for Parents, a 40-day journey of “dares” challenging one or both parents to understand, practice, and communicate Christ-like love to their children. Easy to read and work into a busy schedule, The Love Dare for Parents is designed to “turn the hearts of parents to their children and turn the hearts of children to their parents” (Malachi 4:6) so that moms and dads can more fully enjoy and delight in their children while maximizing the positive impact they have on their lives long term.

Each day brings a promising key verse from Scripture, a biblical principle about love that applies to parenting, a specific challenge the parent does for the sake of their child, and space to journal thoughts and reflect on what happened that day.

My husband and I actually began this book together this past Sunday. I'll be honest with you, the journey for us is very intimate and private. Every parent has its strengths and weaknesses when it comes to parenting. I was even surprised when I took the online assessment. We both look forward to the daily dares, and want to be more Christ-like in our parenting. 

I wanted to share with my readers that we are going through this 40 day journey, so that you remember us in prayer. I also thought it only fair to bless one of my readers with their very own copy of this book now rather than wait until after we finish it. I want to pray for you as take the dare. 

The mandatory entry is easy. Answer this question: Are you ready to take the dare?


 photo BlogSignature_zpsaaa2dccc.png

Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Icon Media Group for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.
Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, June 27, 2014

Today's Post: Foodie Friday at OkWB, Summer Salads

Today at Oklahoma Women Bloggers,  I am sharing a few of our nest's favorite Summer Salads. When the temperature starts climbing and activities start increasing I begin looking for quick and cold go to recipes. Be sure to head over to the post and leave a comment.





 photo BlogSignature_zpsaaa2dccc.png

The Story of "The Star-Spangled Banner" Review


America will celebrate its 238th birthday next Friday. How do you celebrate? Me? With food, family, friends and fireworks of course.

There is always one song played on this day that reminds us of our independence. The same anthem that is played every time our grand ole' flag is raised before sporting events, when a medal is won, or when our troops from battle return. The Star Spangled Banner.

I was recently asked to review the book The Story of "The Star-Spangled Banner" written by Patricia A. Pingry.  This book,  in less than 200 words, tells the story of how the words to our national anthem came to be written. Above all, it teaches basic flag manners. Remove you hats and place your right hand over your heart. I think young and old alike need to be reminded of these basics at times. The board book is beautifully illustrated and the story takes you back in time. The pride you feel is amazing.

The book is recommended for ages 2 to 5, but I love these books for my 7 year old because she reads it herself.

Our children are never too young to learn and the learning never ends. You can get your very own copy of this book through Ideals Books, Amazon or your local Christian book store.

 photo BlogSignature_zpsaaa2dccc.png

Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Ideals Books for providing the book for this review. I will not receive monetary compensation for this review.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

The LEGO® Movie Giveaway



Everything is Awesome!

Have you seen The LEGO® Movie yet. We haven't. It's on our Summer movie bucket list for the last week in July. Our popcorn buckets are ready.

I have AWESOME news. One of my readers is getting their very own blu-ray copy of the The LEGO® Movie.

The LEGO® Movie, the first-ever, full-length theatrical LEGO® adventure, directed by Phil Lord & Christopher Miller is an original 3D computer animated story that follows Emmet, an ordinary, rules-following, perfectly average LEGO minifigure who is mistakenly identified as the most extraordinary person and the key to saving the world. He is drafted into a fellowship of strangers on an epic quest to stop an evil tyrant, a journey for which Emmet is hopelessly and hilariously underprepared.

Chris Pratt (Moneyball) stars as the voice of Emmet. Will Ferrell (The Campaign) stars as the voice of his primary adversary, President Business, an erudite, anal-retentive CEO who has a hard time balancing world domination with micro-managing his own life; while Liam Neeson (Taken) voices the president's powerful henchman, known as Bad Cop, who will stop at nothing to catch Emmet.

Starring as Emmet's fellow travelers are Oscar® winner Morgan Freeman (Million Dollar Baby), as Vitruvius, an old mystic; Elizabeth Banks (The Hunger Games, Emmy nominee for 30 Rock), as tough-as-nails Lucy, who mistakes Emmet for the savior of the world and guides him on his quest; Will Arnett (Emmy nominee, 30 Rock), as the mysterious Batman, a LEGO minifigure with whom Lucy shares a history; Nick Offerman (NBC's Parks and Recreation) as a craggy, swaggering pirate, obsessed with revenge on President Business; and Alison Brie (Community) as a sweet, loveable member of the team, with a powerful secret.

With The LEGO® Movie app you can get into the AWESOME Lego action by pressing the "record" button and making your very own mini 6 second LEGO GIF video. Then you can share to Twitter and Facebook. Videos instantly get posted to YouTube for everybody to enjoy!
xxxx

Now who wants this movie? All you have to do is let me know on the easy Rafflecopter entry form that you visited the app. Bonus entries are available. 

 photo BlogSignature_zpsaaa2dccc.png

Disclosure: Each household is only eligible to win The Lego Movie Blu-Ray via blog reviews and giveaways. Only one entrant per mailing address per giveaway. No P.O. Boxes. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you will not be eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification. Special thanks to Warner Bros. Home Entertainment for providing this giveaway. I will not be compensated financially or by product for this giveaway. It's for FUN and because I LOVE my readers!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Father's Day 2014

We spent our Father's Day a little different this year. Miss K and I were in Wilson with my Daddy and Jason and B were at home together. B went to church camp last Wednesday and since K and I were going to Wilson on Thursday after I finished my work for the week the kids gave Jason his Father's Day card on Tuesday night- the last night we were together as a family. (that was a long explanation)

Of course as always I tried to be a bit creative. So I dressed the kids up in their "activity" gear and grabbed my camera. Here is what we came up with.



Truth.




And of course a picture of me and my Daddy. The first man who ever loved me, kissed me, held my hand...the man who started it all.


 photo BlogSignature_zpsaaa2dccc.png

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Help Name the New Snickers Bar! #SnickersVote #Giveaway


Snickers wants your help in deciding the name of it’s new chocolate bar!

My favorite candy bar is surprise....a Snickers Bar. I am teaming up with Snickers and Partners Hub to bring one of my blessed readers the following fun Snickers Vote app and we’ll give you a Snickers Voting Prize Pack that includes a SNICKERS bar, A SNICKERS BITES pack, a SNICKERS Almond bar, a SNICKERS Peanut Butter Squared bar, a SNICKERS Rockin’ Nut Road Bar, and a pair of movie tickets! 


A delicious new SNICKERS® Bar is coming. It has more peanuts, more caramel, and more chocolate. It has more of everything people love most about SNICKERS – except nougat and a name. Mars Chocolate North America has announced that for the first time consumers will have the opportunity to help name the newest product from SNICKERS!

The as-of-now unnamed bar includes a single delicious layer of crunchy roasted peanuts and smooth caramel perfectly blended and enrobed in milk chocolate. And fans get to name it. Consumers can visit the SNICKERS Facebook page (www.facebook.com/snickers), through June 13, 2014, to choose from one of five possible names:

SNICKERS Go Nuts
SNICKERS Xtreme
SNICKERS #MoreNuts
SNICKERS Nuts Galore
SNICKERS Nuts!




The new bar will be out in stores in 2015! I voted Snickers #MoreNuts- I love hashtags.

Now, who wants a Snickers Prize Pack? All you have to do is vote and share their favorite in the comments section as your giveaway entry. Bonus entries are available. All entries will be collected on the easy Rafflecopter form.

   photo BlogSignature_zpsaaa2dccc.png

Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Snickers and PartnersHub for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I will not receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post. Each household is only eligible to win One (1) Snickers Voting Pack with an assortment of Snickers Brand products and two (2) movie tickets. via blog reviews and giveaways. Only one entrant per mailing address per giveaway. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you will not be eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification. USA entries only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, May 30, 2014

Today's Post: Foodie Friday at OkWB #ChocolateGravy

Today I am writing the Foodie Friday at Oklahoma Women Bloggers. I am sharing my Chocolate Gravy recipe, the story behind it, and what may the beginning of how the next generation will carry on this tradition.

Here is the recipe. Now head on over to OkWB and read the story. Be sure to comment!

right click, save/print

 photo BlogSignature_zpsaaa2dccc.png

Monday, May 26, 2014

Thank You. Memorial Day 2014

Thank you. Thank you for giving your life. Thank you for sacrificing your life every day. Thank you for giving your time away from your family. Thank you for defending mine and my family's life.

Happy Memorial Day 2014!!


Floral Haven Cemetery- Broken Arrow, OK




 photo BlogSignature_zpsaaa2dccc.png