Embracing a Healthy Family: twittermoms
Showing posts with label twittermoms. Show all posts
Showing posts with label twittermoms. Show all posts

My top 5 New Year's resolutions for getting healthy and fit in 2010

Every year, most of us decide the new year is going to be a better year.  Whether the reasons are for health, wellness or other reasons, it's good to have goals to reach for.  Ubisoft Entertainment and TwitterMoms has teamed up to challenge us to list our five top New Year's resolution for getting healthy and fit in 2010.

My top five resolutions are:
  1. Eat healthier - I want to choose better foods, more organic type products and less processed foods.  Reading books such as Prime Time Health by Dr. Sears has been inspirational in getting healthier and eating right.
  2. Quality time - I want to realize what is important and what isn't.  Not sweating the small stuff is definitely a path I want to focus on.  Spending more time with my kids and my husband is going to be a priority and will compliment a healthy mind. 
  3. Lose weight - yeah, right ... who doesn't, right?  Seriously, I started this endeavor last year but have slowly moved a mind set to realize this want.  I have finally learned that I can't do this cold turkey so I have devised a plan to lose it healthier and slower.  Losing weight is right up there with getting healthier for 2010.
  4. Exercise - you can't be healthy without exercising.  Exercising is instrumental in every facet of our lives and when you don't exercise, you put your body and health in jeopardy.  My goal is to utilize my bike and my Wii system.  I love working out with my Wii and it's a great way to get your kids to get involved as well.  Read more below.
  5. Volunteer - giving back is a key to happiness in my opinion.  Giving a smile, a chance of hope or time to someone in need is priceless.  I want to continue the giving and volunteer time to instill a sense of duty to my children.  Our goal this year is not only to support deployed troops (my husband is deploying for Kuwait in May for a year) but also to give to pediatric patients in our local children's hospital.  Having two children with fairly new chronic medical conditions and being placed in hospitals numerous times, I sympathize with the patient and the family.  My goal is take unused happy meal toys and supplement it with other toys and treats to give to those tiny little brave ones.

Our Wii system was one of the better investments I could have made.  Not only is it allowing myself and my oldest to work out together but it also encourages my little one's to play.

This new game, Your Shape featuring Jenny McCarthy is a must have mostly due to Jenny as she is really a funny person. Your Shape builds in a workout program based on YOUR fitness level, goals and schedule.  You can watch a video HERE with Jenny about the game. 

PhotobucketHere are some of the features:
  • Personalized to You - Your unique plan is based on the results of your fitness test, combined with your personal fitness goals. This plan will mix the right level of intensity with exercises focused on achieving your goal.
  • You’ll Always Do the Exercises Correctly - The camera projects your image onto the TV screen so you can see yourself exercising next to Jenny.
  • Exercise Controller-Free - The camera sees you, so it works without requiring any additional hardware (such as Wiimotes, nunchucks, and balance boards), leaving your hands free to focus on the exercises.
  • Exercise That’s Fun and Motivational - not only is Jenny your in-game workout buddy, but you can choose from 6 background colors, 100 motivating animations, and more than 75 music tracks.
  • More Exercises Than Any Other Game - Your Shape includes close to 500 exercises – which means that your routine is always focused on meeting your goals.

Want to join in?  Click on this link and you can find out how to enter yourself at TwitterMoms.  Thanks Ubisoft and TwitterMoms!


Delicious Holiday Hot Chocolate & Lenox Wine Glass Giveaway 12/15: WINNER ANNOUNCED



An e-mail was just sent and she will have 48 hours to respond.  I would expedite this but I won my set from Lenox back in mid November and have not received them yet so they definitely won't be received in time for Christmas as I found out last night.

Thanks to all that entered!

Winter Greetings® Everyday Goldfinch Mug by Lenox

  • 4 1/2 cups of low fat or whole milk
  • 1 cup cocoa solids chocolate, broken into small pieces
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 4-5 tablespoons brandy
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla (optional in place of the brandy)
  • 1-2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, to taste

  • Boil milk in a large heavy based saucepan, remove as boiling point is reached.  Be careful not to scorch.
  • In a small pan, place chocolate and two tablespoons of milk while stirring over a low heat.  Once melted, add the melted chocolate mixture into the remaining milk while stirring well.
  • Add sugar, cinnamon and brandy.
  • Using heatproof glasses or mugs, serve the delicious hot chocolate with a dollop of whipped cream lightly dusted with cocoa powder or cinnamon.
  • Serve with a cinnamon stick for an added extra stirrer.
To Decorate:

  • 6 tablespoons whipped cream
  • 4 teaspoons cocoa powder or ground cinnamon
  • cinnamon stick, for stirrers (optional)

Serves four eagerly waiting guests!
*Leave out the brandy for a kid friendly version and enjoy!

How to Make Your Own Vanilla Extract
  • 10 vanilla beans
  • 1 3-pint Mason jar
  • Vodka
Slice the vanilla beans in half, place in jar and fill with vodka.
Store in a dark area and ensure the lid is on tight.
Takes about 8 weeks to finish (I'm on week 4).
Lenox & TwitterMoms Drinks of the SeasonMore Drinks of the Season Recipes

The Giveaway:

O2xygen Balloon Wine Glasses by Lenox (above), Set of 4 normally priced at $58.

To Enter:

Follow my blog and leave a comment.

Extra Entries:
  • Become a Lenox fan on Facebook for 2 comments.
  • Follow Lenox on Twitter for 2 comments.
  • Follow me on Twitter for 2 comments.
  • Subscribe to my blog for 2 comments.
  • Enter one of my other giveaways and leave 2 comments.
  • Tweet about the giveaway for 2 comments (can be done daily).
  • Blog about the giveaway for 2 comments.
  • Vote for me at DivineCaroline (see widget on left side of blog) for 5 comments.

Giveaway ends 12/15 at midnight.

Winner chosen by random.org.

Good luck!

Youthful Tips

Tis the Season But That's Not the Only Reason

I spent time over the year giving back because I do have the good fortune of having an Army Officer husband and I work as well.  Throughout the year, I have donated three of my daughter's clothing to a church and also FreeCycled in hopes of those clothes going to needy people.  This past summer, we gave a host of baby products such as walkers, bouncy chairs and many other things to a needy pregnant couple.  We then gave away an almost new washer and dryer to the same neighbor who is a minister in a small church in South Carolina.  It's a great feeling to help others in need especially when you have been given good blessings.  TwitterMoms and Robeez wants to know how you and I are giving back this holiday season.

This Christmas, I have adopted a child from the Angel Tree, I have provided presents for my elderly, fixed income parents to give to their grandkids, I have sponsored a couple of my own blog giveaways in hopes it's going to someone who really needs the help, I'm writing Santa letters for my daughter's class and expanding it to the siblings as I learned one child's father is in Iraq and another is fighting injuries sustained in the war and has been away for two years recovering from his children.  We have yet to sort through the old toys to give those away which most are like new and some still have tags. 

This is a great way to spread the desire to help others.  Stride Rite Children's Group, part of the Stride Rite unit of Collective Brands, Inc., markets the leading brand of premium children's footwear in the United States under such brands as Stride Rite®, Saucony® Kids, Sperry Top-Sider® Kids, Keds® Kids, Robeez® and among others. For 90 years, the company’s passion for excellence in design has been focused on ensuring the proper development of children’s feet with a commitment to innovation, research and technology.

What I like about Robeez is the fact that Robeez will donate a pair of soft sole shoes to K.I.D.S. with every soft sole purchased through December 23rd and link to: http://www.robeez.com/EN-US/seasonofgiving.htm.

My favorite holiday shoe is the classic patent black shoes.   There is just something about Mary Janes and how elegant and classy they look.  The great thing is they are approved by the American Podiatric Medical Association.

These are also my favorite. The Robeez Cozy Ankle Booties - tan in color are the ultimate in comfort, this plush ankle bootie is so warm and cozy that your little eskimo will want to wear them day and night, indoors and out.

Whatever the reason, it's always good to give back wherever you can.  Whether it's cash, new items, food or used items, someone needs something.  This is a great thought provoking blog request and I hope everyone embraces the challenge to think about what you are doing to give back.  If you are one of the one's in need, may your wishes be answered and good time start to follow.

Thanks TwitterMoms and Robeez for this great opportunity to spread the word.

Have you entered any of my giveaways?   Get five bonus entries for each and every giveaway you enter for telling me in this post what you have done this Christmas season or will do to help someone else!

Youthful Tips

What was the most surprising gift you've ever received?

Thinking back to what was the most surprising gift I have ever received would be a toss up.  Thanks to TwitterMoms and Target, I had to take some time to think and reflect on the answer to this one.  Being 41, I've had a lot of Christmas memories to ponder.  My earliest memory would be the arrival of a baby brother 34 years ago.  He didn't arrive on Christmas but December 23rd was pretty close!  That one big event altered the path of many lives which produced many more memories.

I could also think of many others like marrying in Hawaii three year's ago at Thanksgiving and finding out I was pregnant right around Christmas or just all the years spent with my beautiful girls.  To choose one that sticks in my mind of the most recent present, there would be two with this one coming in second with my in-laws.

I watched a grown man reduced to tears as he opened a photo book I put together by Blurb that contained the military history of his father during WWII.  I not only utilized photos he had on his father but I added the military records and photographs that related to where he was during that time period.  The inside jacket included a picture of my father-in-law with a dedication.  He was so proud of that book that he ordered multiple copies for everyone in the family to include the extended family.

Right before that, I also watched my step-mother-in-law tear up as she opened a box that had a personalized black and white photo of her and her sister as little girls talking to Santa.  I "stole" the photo from her picture blog and had it made as a surprise.  She also ended up ordering more for her family members.

I have to say the most memorable present was finding out my dad was cancer free.  He was battling an advanced stage of colon cancer. He waited too long to go in when he had the initial warning signs and symptoms so this meant aggressive treatment.  I had a boss that was so good to me and allowed me to spend most of my summer there helping out.  He had radiation and chemo therapy which followed by a surgery to remove what they could.  He was a trooper and for being 70 at that time, amazing!  He was still mowing the yard and was active. I don't know how he did it but he did.  Three years later, he was with me while my husband was deployed to Iraq and after a battery for retests, he was still cancer free.  Christmas, three year's ago, was the best!

Giving is the most special time of this season and to be able to give such a heartfelt gift is better than any gift received.

What is your most memorable time?  Enter at TwitterMoms!


Youthful Tips

My Plans for a Frugal Christmas & Holiday Ideas with TwitterMoms & Staples

I started out half the year thinking about how to be more frugal with Christmas given we have five kids and three sets of parents. I was losing track of the ways I was going to make this an inexpensive yet nice Christmas so I went to Staples, picked up a cheap handy journal to keep my lists of money making opportunities ranging from surveys, buyer advantage programs, bank debit programs and other opportunities.  TwitterMoms and Staples has put together a challenge for moms to share how they are saving money.

When I think of Staples, I always rememeber my step son taking the "That was easy" button and blasting it in my ear last year for Christmas.  Staples is another great place to pick up some of those high tech gifts or even office supplies or furnishings.  An avid printer might appreciate a big supply of cartridges.  A hopeless direction finder would love a new GPS (my sister for example)!  Not only can you get your presents but you can order wonderful personalized cards, calendars and one of my favorites, gift card holders.

Deals for Busy Moms This Holiday Season
Check out This Week's Deals!

About this TwitterMoms Blogging Program

Looking for more creative ways to save money?  Zazzle, if you are creative, is a great venue for making items with no costs out of your pocket. I started in the political arena and ventured into other areas such as business cards, children's products and invitations. Not quite a year later, I've made over $2,000 which has been handy for customized photo gifts and cash. This will definitely take care of a few gifts.

My latest real time frugal Christmas deals/buys.

Customized Wine Labels:

Use these to customize and accompany the wine to explain the vintage, type and other wine maker notes:

Mypoints.com is a quick way to make points to turn into gift cards and more. If you buy a lot on the internet, definitely use this site as the points add up fast! They also offer other incentives to earn points ranging from surveys to games to referrals. The points accumulated will amount to one gift off the book for Christmas in a Macy's gift card! 

My bank offers debit card rewards so whenever we click that debit button, we add on more points. Utilize those cards especially if it's via a free account! These points will knock off two more gifts in the form of two gift cards from The Gap for those hard to buy for teens:

I'm trying the survey route as many bloggers note are worthwhile along with Swagbucks but I haven't quite got the hang of that one so I'll keep moving along as a snail's pace.

Take advantage of cosmetic type freebies if you use products such as Clinique or Lancome. They have nice free items that can add up to a nice gift basket:

My employer also provides thank you for a good job points to spend with a company in exchange for gifts.  It's been a good year and here is what I'm purchasing as gifts:

I know that one isn't necessarily fair as not everyone gets a perk such as that from their employer but it's to show an opportunity that I could spend on myself but am choosing to use towards making the holiday more frugal.

My Coke Rewards points can add up quickly if you an avid Coke fan as we are.  Thanks to TwitterMoms, I took part in an earlier opportunity where I received an additional 500 points which quickly bumped up our Coke addiction points.  Not sure what I'll purchase yet but it's looking like a $50 gift card.

This year, I will also bake to save a little from purchasing some of the higher priced YET very good baked items.  I posted previously about some really simple but elegant looking from AllYou.com.

CreativeGiftWrapping.Com has very elegant and sophisticated packaging to add the final touch to your gifts.

Have you ever noticed how many bloggers have giveaways? If you have the time, enter! There are some really nice giveaways and given the volume, you are bound to win something eventually!

Top Three Green-Living Tips & More

I used to not think too much about living greener until recently where I started changing habits to live a little better.  Just by looking at my own household and the volume of trash taken out, I knew I had to do something to help reduce the waste we produce not to mention going green can mean lower costs.  TwitterMoms and LighterSaferGreener is sponsoring this great awareness blogger contest for the top three green-living tips.

Thanks to my blogging, I was introduced to the Pur Water Filtration Pitcher which is a very obvious change to make to reduce wastes considering I would normally throw away at least five empty plastic bottles a day.  This change reduces waste, eliminates the growing expensive purchases of bottled water and provides a little control in what my family and I are actually drinking.  This is probably my biggest green-living tip.  The great thing about the Pur system is they have flavor cartridges to allow a little jazz in every glass of water.  Lemon is my favorite but they have other flavors that should appeal to anyone.

My second Green-Living tip is eliminating the need to use all those plastic shopping bags at the store and use the great recycled shopping bags that I picked up for free.  It's amazing how much you can actually carry in those bags which makes it easier to get back into the house.  I was reluctant to use them until my 21 year old kept needling me to switch as she works at Publix and loves the bags herself.  They fold up nice and neat and can be put away in the car for the next trip out.  The amount of waste due to these bags is unreal.  The only thing I used to do with the bags is reuse them for the small trash can liners which Target bags work the best for that task.  I found the bags from Publix and Walmart were useless and there was no point in not doing my part by switching. 

My third Green-Living tip includes purchasing as many organic fruits and vegetables, wherever possible, since that means a reduction in the number of harmful chemicals in the soils and our groundwater plus we get healthier food.

Other tips I use for living green:
  • We participate in the school's Capri Sun Pouch recyling program where the school works with a vendor who exchanges the voucher for school for cash and they recycle the pouches.  They also recycle paper and newspapers.
  • I avoid printing e-mails for work as I'm a telecommuter.  The documents that are not confidential, I let the girls draw pictures on the back.
  • Use your local FreeCycle program from Yahoo.  Many products are reused thanks to this great program that allows communities to give and take items for free.
  • I use energy efficient light bulbs that may costs a little more but they use less energy and require less changing.
  • I use canned vegetables cans during the holidays to bake decorative homemade bread gifts.  The cans be decorated with left over Christmas wrap from last year and the ribbons and bows can be added to spruce up the presentation.
  • I use past Christmas cards to make my own gift tags by layering other papers and ribbons and projects I print off my computer to personalize such as photos.
  • We drink a lot of lemonade and with all those empty sturdy cans, I reuse them to start plants in late fall to be planted outside.

Want to get involved, learn more about what you can do or participate in the blog challenge? 

Go here:

Youthful Tips

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