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8 Things We Need to Teach our Kids about Food

Teaching kids about food

This post about things we need to teach our kids has been sponsored but all opinions expressed here are my own. Last week I took my children to the grocery store to shop for a church service project. The goal was to provide a Thanksgiving Day feast in a box for our local food pantry. We were provided a list of items that we were to buy so there was really no creativity or substitution allowed. As expected, the list of foods contained things like 'instant potatoes' and 'canned gravy'.  My daughter asked why we were buying all these processed … [Read more...]

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Tune in to Cutthroat Kitchen: Superstar Sabotage Tournament

cutthroat kitchen

This post about Cutthroat Kitchen has been sponsored but all opinions expressed are my own. My husband and I love to watch the Food Network together and there are always great cooking shows on for us to watch.  We enjoy seeing hosts travel to far off lands to eat exotic foods, cook mainstream favorites in their own kitchen, and compete against each other in a brutal cooking competition.  One of our favorite TV food personalities has always been Alton Brown. We even have a few cookbooks of his and they have some great recipes in them!  Last … [Read more...]

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Your Back to School List Should Include Identity Theft Protection #LifeLockUltimatePlus

Back to School Identity Theft Protection for your Child

This back to school discussion has been sponsored by LifeLock but all opinions expressed here are my own. Every year before my kids go back to school I have to register them with the county at the school they will be attending.  I have no idea WHY I have to reregister them every single year but I do and it is a huge pain in the neck.  I go online to the school's website and have to fill out a ridiculously long online form with all the required data.  This year as I was filling out the back to school form I came across a question I don't … [Read more...]

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Genealogy Tips: How to Start Researching Your Family Tree #surnameproject

Genealogy Tips and How to Start Researching Your Family Tree

These genealogy tips are brought to you by Ancestry.com but all opinions expressed here are my own. When I was young my father discovered the joys of genealogy.  What did that mean for me?  It meant that we went to every family reunion armed with paper and pencil to interview everyone that was willing to talk to him.  It mean that we spent a LOT of time wandering around old grave sites and doing rubbings and taking photos.  It meant that the basement started to gather a huge collection of old books and an impressive photography setup.  Dad … [Read more...]

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Credit monitoring is not the same as identity theft protection! #LifeLocksafety

Identity Theft

I am a LifeLock Ambassador and this identity theft post has been sponsored but all opinions expressed here are my own. Last month I wrote about my experience with identity theft.  Someone had used my personal information to open a fake bank account and bounced a $300 check.  I was shocked!  A business had disposed of my personal information incorrectly and as a result, I ended up with a huge hassle to deal with!  If I had identity theft protection at the time, I would have known the moment that account was opened!  While credit monitoring is … [Read more...]

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Silver Turtles, Kids in the Kitchen and a Lesson in Patience

silver turtles

My children are in their early teens and as part of their 'summer chores' I decided that they needed to learn how to cook.  My daughter is very good in the kitchen, although she definitely prefers to make sweets and not actual dinner.  Unless she is going to live on cake for the rest of her life, that  needs to change.  My son would happily live on 'ready to eat' food.  That may include bagels (raw...because toasting is too much work), cheese sticks (because slicing actual cheese is too much work), and fruit that does not require cutting or … [Read more...]

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Identity Theft is One Hassle I Could Live Without! #LifeLockProtect

The Hassle of Identity Theft

This post about identity theft has been sponsored by LifeLock and Find Your Influence but all opinions expressed are my own. #LifeLockProtect I like to think that I am very careful with my personal information.  I work in the medical field so I know all about the importance of protecting personal information!  I shred important documents, shop only on secure websites, and cut up old credit cards into miniscule little pieces.  However, sometimes identity theft is completely out of our control.  When a business disposes of our private … [Read more...]

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Making a Bucket List for Long Term Goals #BufferinBucketList

bucket list

I have always been a list making sort of girl. I make lists for the grocery store, lists of errands I need to run, and lists of things I want to accomplish for my blogs. Lists keep me organized, on task and help me achieve goals or just manage to make it through the grocery store without forgetting anything. Imagine my surprise when I got asked to make a bucket list for Bufferin and realized I have never made a bucket list! ME! The queen of list making has no list for long term goals I would like to achieve before I die. I find that completely … [Read more...]

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The Best Holiday Gifts: Food, Family and Financial Security #GenworthUSA

homemade candy

This discussion about the best holiday gifts has been brought to you by Genworth and Brandfluential  but all opinions expressed here are my own. The holidays are a special time of year and while I am often caught up in the chaos of shopping and baking I try to never forget the reason for the season. I have never been the type of person to ask for diamonds and fancy coats for Christmas.  I don't need a Lexus tied up in a bow or a trip to some exotic island.  Okay, the exotic island sounds like fun but only if I can climb volcanoes and dine with … [Read more...]

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The Importance of Family Traditions and the Welch’s #sharewhatsgood Photo Contest

family traditions 2

This family traditions post is part of a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Welch's. I received product samples to facilitate my review, and a promotional item as a thank you for participating. Family traditions are a great way to make memories that your children will keep for a lifetime.  They don't have to be complicated....sitting down to dinner every night can be a family tradition all by itself.  Wikipedia defines family traditions as a collection of attitudes and ideas that a person inherits from his/her parents and … [Read more...]

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Tips for a Successful Family Dinner and McCain Potato Contest

family dinner tips

This family dinner post is sponsored by McCain Potatoes and Mom Central but all opinions expressed here are my own. Growing up many years ago, family dinner was very important in my house.  My dad didn't get home til after 6 but we always sat down to eat dinner together.  You did not answer the phone, read a book, listen to the radio or get distracted by anything else during the family dinner.  You ate and you talked to your family.  Fast forward 30 years and now I am just as adamant about the sanctity of the family dinner as my mom and dad … [Read more...]

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Long Distance Care Giving for Elderly Parents #GenworthUSA

long distance care giving

This discussion about long distance care giving is brought to you by Genworth Financial and Brandfluential but all opinions expressed are my own. My grandmother is 93 years old and up until a few years ago she was quite active and independent.  She was the type of grandmother who went on trips to the casino rather than baking cookies and had loads of energy.  Age and 2 broken hips have slowed her down quite a bit and last year my parents finally had to make the decision to put her in a nursing home.  It was a hard decision for them to make, … [Read more...]

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Inspiring Teachers and the TEACH Documentary

mrs murphy and teach documentary

This post about inspiring teachers and the TEACH documentary information has been sponsored by Linquia but all opinions expressed are my own. When my son was little he was one of those "What happens if I do THIS?" kindof kids. He was a bit of a loner, preferring to be by himself daydreaming and poking at things with sticks rather than playing in a large group of kids.  He preferred crafts and games that allowed for freedom of thought rather than following strict rules or coloring within the lines.  Little did I know at the time that these … [Read more...]

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Back to School Fashion Trends for Less at JCP (#FirstDayLook)

back to school deals

This post about back to school fashion trends has been sponsored by JCP and Glam Media but all opinions expressed are my own. My kids started back to school a few weeks ago and I am slowly trying to get their clothes situated for fall.  I spent an entire weekend sorting through their closets and bureaus trying to weed out the things that no longer fit.  Since I am pretty sure somebody is sneaking Miracle Gro into my kids breakfast cereal, there are a LOT of things from last year that no longer fit.  In fact, almost everything had to get … [Read more...]

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Common Sense Retirement Advice from an Average Mom (#GenworthUSA )

retirement

This retirement discussion has been brought to you by Genworth Financial and Brandfluential but all opinions expressed here are my own. When my husband and I got married almost 20 years ago we were only a few years out of college.  While we may have been young, we had clear goals for how we wanted our lives to play out over the next several decades.  The day to day hassles of work, kids, and life sometimes take up a majority our our time but we never forget those long term goals that we have set for ourselves.  We have managed to check off … [Read more...]

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Sun, Swimming, and Summer Fun with Snapple Iced Tea #Snapple5050

snapple iced tea #shop 16 edit with banner

I am a member of the Collective Bias®  Social Fabric® Community.  This shop Snapple Iced Tea post has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias and their client. My kids have been off from school for two months now and I am pretty sure that 90% of those days have been rainy.  Honestly, we have had so much rain the last couple of months that the garden is practically under water and the kids are going stir crazy.  What happens when teenagers don't get out of the house on a regular basis?  They drive me … [Read more...]

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Women and Finance: How to Save Money and Go Green #GenworthUSA

how to save money

This post on how to save money is brought you you by Genworth Financial but all opinions expressed here are my own. When my husband and I started out on our life together we were not exactly rolling in money.  As a grad student he was paid a pitiful salary to spend 80 plus hours a week in the lab.  I didn't earn much more at my own job, either.  But, thankfully, we didn't have a lot of needs, either.  We paid the bills, fed ourselves, and if there was any money left over it went to his grandmother to pay off the truck she bought him.  We … [Read more...]

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Green Up Your Camping Routine! #SCJgreenerchoices #spon

SCJ Diane Camping pic edit

This post on how to green up your camping routine is sponsored by SC Johnson but all opinions expressed are my own.   Camping and hiking are two of my family’s favorite spring and summertime activities. I love getting back to nature, exploring the woods, cooking over a fire, and ignoring my cell phone every once in a while! Camping is a great way to teach children to appreciate nature and the importance of eco-friendly planning during trips. Check out my article on the SC Johnson Greener Choices blog for a few ways to reduce your … [Read more...]

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Tips for Caring for Kids Teeth with Braces #ToothTunes1D #spon

caring for kids teeth with braces

This post on caring for kids teeth with braces is sponsored by Arm and Hammer Tooth Tunes but all opinions express are my own. When my children were younger we worked hard to get them to do a good job brushing their teeth.  We would buy fruity tasting toothpaste and sing songs to remind them how long they should be brushing for.  Once they got the hang of things, I pretty much began ignoring tooth brushing time for about 10 years.  I figured they were old enough to do it by themselves and it was one less thing for me to worry about, right? … [Read more...]