Monday, June 26, 2017

Think Mean Green to Tackle Your Cleaning Tasks - Review

I received products for review, as part of being a Mean Green Ambassador.  The opinions within this post are of my own and I was not influenced in any way.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.

If you haven't heard of this fantastic company before, Mean Green sells a line of heavy-duty all-purpose cleaners for all kinds of messes. 

Mean Green cleaning products make getting my house and other areas back in shape so much easier.  I can see the gleam and shine.  As you begin your cleaning, consider Mean Green for all your cleaning needs.  Your automobile, garage, and entire house will thank you.

Mean Green added three new products to their line in 2017:

Mean Green Super Strength Heavy Duty wipes are specially formulated to out-clean other brands on tough grease and grime. Easily removes grease, grime, oil, adhesives, and other tough messes from various surfaces. It’s ideal for the kitchen, bathroom, workshop, garage, DIY projects, construction sites, commercial cleaning, in the home, or on the move.  

Mean Green Car Wash is specifically formulated to deliver rich foam that effortlessly removes dirt and grime without leaving behind streaks or spots. Cleans cars quickly and with confidence. Use Mean Green Car Wash for at home convenience, right from your garden hose. No Bucket Needed!

Mean Green Auto & Garage is a concentrated, multi-purpose cleaner and degreaser. Proven to beat other brands on tough grease and grime. Specially formulated to remove and dissolve petroleum based grease, grime, and oil from engines, tools, and concrete, to outdoor furniture, grills, painted surfaces, and more. 

Of the three, I was able to try the Mean Green Auto & Garage Cleaner & Degreaser.  

I had no doubt that Mean Green would come through with the Auto & Garage cleaner.  After all, I've been super pleased with their household cleaners.  My husband tinkers with cars in his garage and has talked highly of Mean Green Auto & Garage.  It is formulated to remove and dissolve petroleum based grease, grime, and oil from engines, tools, and concrete.  I have to give Jason props; he actually tidied up his garage and tools using this cleaning product.  I guess since he was able to do it without overexerting himself and he was able to notice how well the cleaner worked, he didn't mind straightening out his "man space".  


Mean Green Auto & Garage has also been handy on our vehicles.  Rather than take the vehicles to the car wash for a few dirty spots, I use Mean Green Auto & Garage.  Like most other cleaners, you just have to spray it on the areas you want treated and let sit for a short period of time.  Wipe the dirt and grease down with a cloth, then rinse clean with water. 

Launched in 1990 in Spartanburg, SC, Mean Green Super Strength is made with a unique blend of detergents and solvents that make one of the most powerful cleaners I've encountered.  Lab tests have shown it outperforms nearly every other cleaner on nearly every stain.

My white vehicle is actually white!  That happens when I tackle it with Mean Green Auto & Garage.

Is Mean Green on your list of cleaning products?

Wild Republic Huggers - Review and Giveaway

I received product for review from Wild Republic.  The opinions within this post are of my own and I was not influenced in any way.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.
For nearly four decades, Wild Republic’s realistic stuffed animals and toys have helped children explore the beauty of nature. Their mission is to create toys that foster curiosity about wildlife and educate children about the wonders of nature.  I love that the company features animals that you don't necessarily see for sale at other places.

I recently received one of the Wild Republic Huggers for review.  Huggers are soft, stuffed animals with snap bands as hands.  By spreading their arms wide and squeezing their chest, the Huggers plush will instantly wrap their arms around you.
There are many Wild Republic Huggers animals, with some of them being a sea turtle, unicorn, red monkey, snowy owl, and emperor penguin.  I received the Ice Blue Penguin.  It certainly is an adorable little critter.  If you're familiar with slap bracelets, the arms of the plush animals are like those.  Wild Republic Huggers can be used in many ways.  They can be worn around your wrist, attached to a backpack, or wrapped around a piece of decor.  Our blue penguin has made its way around the handle of the fridge and greets us every time we open the door.

Win It!

One person will win a Wild Republic Huggers plush.

*This is a Rafflecopter giveaway open to residents of the USA.*
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It's National Chocolate Pudding Day

I don't know the first thing about making chocolate pudding from scratch, but I know the first thing about eating a big ole' bunch of the pre-packaged stuff.  Eat some today as a snack or dessert.

If you're feeling skippy, take some chocolate pudding over to your beautician today.  It's also National Beautician's Day.  My favorite beautician also happens to be one of my best friends.  She moved over three hours away just last week.  I'm going to be hard pressed to find someone as good as her.

Do you like chocolate pudding?
Who is your favorite beautician?

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Pigsticks and Harold and the Tuptown Thief - Children's Book Review and Giveaway

I received book for review from Candlewick Press.  The opinions within this post are of my own and I was not influenced in any way.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.


Book Overview:

The Butterfly Ball is tomorrow, and everyone has a job to do — even Harold. He's making the Spirit of Tuptown prize! But when the prize statue goes missing, a confident Pigsticks volunteers to solve the case. With more and more things disappearing and everyone in Tuptown a suspect, will Detective Pigsticks track down the mysterious thief?

My Review:

I'd never heard of Pigsticks and Harold until recently.  The duo is featured in a handful of Pigsticks and Harold series books, intended for young readers.

Pigsticks and Harold and the Tuptown Thief is centered around the annual Butterfly Ball where everyone has been assigned a job.  It is Harold the hamster's job to build a statue for the Spirit of Tuptown prize.  Once the statue has been finished, Harold comes outside and notices it missing.  Distraught, Harold enlists the help of Pigsticks, a pig known for his crime solving skills.  Pigsticks asks Harold to be his assistant in solving the mystery.  While they are working on that, two more crimes happen and the pair's plate is full as they try to solve who's doing all this.  Everyone is afraid the ball will be cancelled.  But, right before that happens, the culprit is caught.  Apologies are given and the ball goes back into full swing.

Mysteries aren't necessarily my thing but I got a kick out of this kid's book.  The illustrations and visual cues made me chuckle.  Although I don't necessarily agree with the reason the thief gave for stealing, I still liked this book and like that the residents of Tuptown showed compassion once they found out who the culprit was. 


Win It!

One person will win a book copy of Pigsticks and Harold and the Tuptown Thief.

*This is a Rafflecopter giveaway open to residents of the USA and Canada.*
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Go Organically Fruit Snacks - Review

I received products for review from Go Organically Fruit Snacks.  The opinions within this post are of my own and I was not influenced in any way.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.
Most anyone with teens knows what it's like to keep food in the house.  At some point, they are scouring the pantry for a snack.  And then they're back five minutes later for another snack.

I'll be honest with you and admit that I keep junk food in my home.  There's not a lot of it, but it's there.  I also have healthy snacks on hand.  And my kids have no problem going to either one.

Azra and T.J. trying Go Organically Fruit Snacks for the first time

We've had the opportunity to try Go Organically Fruit Snacks a few times now.  Whether it be my teens or the young kids who come over to visit, the fruit snacks are a big hit.  

Go Organically Fruit Snacks are a brand of GMO-free fruit snacks available in three varieties, all of which are USDA-certified organic, made with real fruit purées and real fruit juices. These treats include 100% of the daily recommended value of Vitamin C and are a good source of Vitamins A and E. Go Organically® Fruit Snacks are also gluten-free, preservative-free and made with natural flavors and colors from natural sources.



There are three varieties of Go Organically Fruit Snacks - Fruit Medley, Tropical, and Mixed Berry.  There are eight individually wrapped snack pouches to a box.  Personally, Mixed Berry is my fave.  But they are all good.  Go Organically Fruit Snacks have a soft texture and don't contain a weird aftertaste.  I appreciate that they are comparable in taste to other brand name fruit snacks, yet are somewhat superior because they are certified organic and made with real juices and purees.  

Have you purchased Go Organically Fruit Snacks?
Which of the three flavors do you think your kids would like best?

Friday, June 23, 2017

A New Chapter In Life: My Daughter Is Engaged


I knew this day would happen but I didn't realize it'd be so soon.  The girl who I still consider to be "my baby" is now engaged.  I'm still trying to wrap my head around it.

Shelby is 23 years old and has always upheld her story that she'd never get married or have kids.  And, now, she's doing at least one of the two.

Shelby and George have been a couple for about six months but have been friends for five years.  They connected earlier in the year and have been inseparable since.  When George asked me for my blessing to ask Shelby to marry him, I was in shock more than anything.  I bawled...and bawled...and bawled.  Most of the tears were because "My Elby" won't be my baby anymore.  She'll be someone else's problem sidekick.  

After snotting and crying all over the place, I gave my blessing.  George then asked both of Shelby's fathers (bio and step).  It wasn't until after approved blessings that he asked her.  


I always thought Shelby would be a free spirit and a drifter.  But, seeing her with George, gives me a good feeling.  They are such a good fit and he treats her like a queen.  And, he doesn't mind hanging out with this crazy future mother-in-law!

The wedding date is set for October 2018.  If anyone wants to mail me several boxes of Kleenex before then, I'd be forever grateful.

There Might Be Lobsters - Children's Book Review and Giveaway

I received book for review from Candlewick Press.  The opinions within this post are of my own and I was not influenced in any way.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.

Book Overview:

Lots of things at the beach scare Sukie. Lots. Because she is just a small dog, and the stairs are big and sandy, and the waves are big and whooshy, and the balls are big and beachy. And besides, there might be lobsters. With endearing illustrations and a perfectly paced text that captures a timid pup’s looping thoughts, here is a funny and honest read-aloud about how overwhelming the world can be when you're worried — and how empowering it is to overcome your fears when it matters the most.
Come on, Sukie, you can do it! A little dog’s paralyzing anxiety gives way to bravery when someone smaller is in need in this humorous, tenderly sympathetic story.

My Review:

A hardback book that's perfect for the summer season, There Might Be Lobsters tells of a girl who wants to take her dog to the beach one day.  The canine, Sukie, is anxious and not necessarily excited about going to the beach.  The dog's imagination goes into action and it wonders what negative things could possibly happen.  When Sukie does finally get to the beach with a beloved sock money by its side, she is still fearful.  Beach balls, waves, and lobsters are just some of the things that Sukie worries about.  When her sock monkey accidentally ends up in the water, Sukie paddles out to save the plush friend without hesitation.  Sukie overcomes her fears to save the sock money friend and learns that the beach isn't such a bad place after all.


Win It!

One person will win a hardback book copy of There Might Be Lobsters.

*This is a Rafflecopter giveaway open to residents of the USA and Canada.*
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It's National Hydration Day


I'll be the first to throw myself under the bus and admit I don't drink enough water.  One or two bottled waters a day is usually my max.  I have a vice with soda and tend to gravitate towards it.  Don't be like me!!

Water is essential to our bodies, and how much we drink affects weight loss and health.  With it being summertime, it's more important than ever to keep hydrated with water.  (Note to self: Practice what you preach).  Water is calorie-free, strengthens your teeth, fights dry mouth, and so much more.  Drink up, people!
Do you drink enough water throughout the day?
What's your favorite brand of bottled water?

Thursday, June 22, 2017

CARS 3 Junior Assembly Kit - Review and Giveaway

I received product for review from Revell.  The opinions within this post are of my own and I was not influenced in any way.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.
Cars 3 is now out in theaters and I'm sure it will be a big hit.  In this third film, Lightning McQueen sets out to prove to a new generation of racers that he's still the best race car in the world.  My family watched the first Cars movie and really enjoyed it.  I can't say the same for the second, but we are amped to see if the franchise has redeemed itself in the third movie.  

Now that Cars 3 is available to watch in theater, there is a whole new array of merchandise featuring the funny and lovable automobiles.  Revell has introduced three new Junior Kits that children can build and play with.  The three model kids available are Lightning McQueen, Jackson Storm, and Cruz Ramirez.  We received the first for review.


The new Junior Kits from Revell includes 21 large body parts and 24 screws and nuts. All three kits retail for $24.99 (MSRP).  My husband spent some time helping our friend's son, TJ, assemble the Lightning McQueen model kit.  

TJ is five years old and did require some help with assembly.  There is an illustrated diagram that shows what piece goes where.  Once Jason showed TJ how one thing worked, TJ was able to do the rest.  For instance, Jason would assemble one tire while TJ watched, then he would take over and do the other three tires.


A plastic screwdriver is included and required to assemble the pieces.  When it is all said and done, the screwdriver fits securely under the car so it doesn't get lost.  Once it is completely assembled, the car will roll with its movable wheels.  If you press on the top of the hood or on the motor, headlights light up and there's a variety of action sounds.  There's also an extra mouth plate so the child can change them out if they want their Cars 3 model car to have a different expression.  The same goes for the eyes.  The section for the eyes slides out, and can be turned around to show a different eye expression.  The hood lifts  up to show the motor.  
underside of completed car

To top it off, kids can use the plastic screwdriver to disassemble the model kit and put it back together again.  I'm almost positive TJ has disassembled and assembled his Lightning McQueen model kit a few hundred times now.  According to his mom, TJ has been fascinated with this toy since he got it. And, I can see why!



Win It!

One person will win a Cars 3 Junior Assembly Kit.

*This is a Rafflecopter giveaway open to residents of the  USA.*
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Summer Essentials from Bioré - Review

I received products for review from Bioré.  The opinions within this post are of my own and I was not influenced in any way.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.
My face feels dirtier during the summer months than any other time of the year.  Summer sweat, heat and humidity can certainly take a toll on skin. Luckily, Bioré Skincare has a cleansing routine that will rid you of blemishes, dirt, and oil and get you on the path to clean, clear, healthy-looking summer skin.

Bioré’s Baking Soda Pore Cleanser and Baking Soda Cleansing Scrub solve the eternal combination skin conundrum by taking all the natural cleansing and exfoliating properties of baking soda while also being gentle on skin.

I've been washing my face every night with Bioré® Baking Soda Pore Cleanser and have been pleased with the results. The liquid cleanser is formulated to clean and exfoliate dry, flaky skin. It deep cleans and exfoliates at the same time.  After wetting your face, you just pump some of the cleanser on your hands and work into a foam.  Then massage over entire face.  I usually wait 2-3 minutes, then rinse it off.  I've had no harsh effects or skin reactions from this cleanser.  In fact, I can see and feel a true, deep clean after each use.

Logan has staked claim on the Bioré Baking Soda Cleansing Scrub.  It's a powder that turns into foam with water.  He uses it 2-4 times a week and has seen a noticeable difference.  I've used it a couple times myself and like the clean feeling it gives my face after use.

As far as effectiveness, both Bioré baking soda products do a pretty decent job at cleansing our faces and removing any makeup, sweat, or dirt.

Three More June Winners

Three of my giveaways have ended and the winners have been randomly drawn.

The winner of My Jesus Bible giveaway is #1, Peggy.

The winner of the Junior Pro Golf Set giveaway is #32, Darby Elizabeth.

The winner of the Sweese 3101 Butter Dish giveaway is #32, bison61.

Congrats to the winners and thanks to all who entered.  Be sure to enter all the currently active giveaways going on.  They're listed at the top left hand side of my blog.  There's no limit to how many you can enter or how many you can win.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

PLAYMOBIL Ice Cream Truck - Review

I received product for review from PLAYMOBIL.  The opinions within this post are of my own and I was not influenced in any way.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.

PLAYMOBIL, one of the top toy manufacturers in the world, remains at the forefront of creative play with a continued mission to inspire children to explore the depths of their imaginations.  The new PLAYMOBIL Ice Cream Truck is a perfect addition to their product line this summer.

I keep toys for younger children on hand at home because friends and family of that age are always stopping by.  Recently my friend's daughter, Azra, came over so I could babysit while mom was away.  I brought out the PLAYMOBIL Ice Cream Truck and it kept Azra busy the whole time.


The PLAYMOBIL Ice Cream Truck has 64 pieces and some assembly is required.  That's part of the fun of it.  Azra is 8 years old and was able to completely assemble all the pieces by herself, with the exception of the back doors.  She needed help putting them right side up.  There is an illustrated diagram included with the set to show what pieces and stickers go where.


There are several little ice cream pieces and people that come with this set.  Because they are so small, they can be a choking hazard to little children.  I gave Azra a baggie to put the small pieces in when she's not playing with them so they don't get lost.  

The Ice Cream set includes one adult figure, three child figures, ice cream truck, table, ice cream, cones, dishes, ice cream scoop, beverages, and other accessories.

The wheels of the ice cream truck are movable, and the awning opens and closes.  The back doors also open and close.  Azra likes this set so much that I let her have it and take it  home.  Her mother has relayed that Azra has lots of fun with it still.  This is a fun playset that encourages imagination.  

Power of Prayer Thursdays - Week 78

(photo credit: Unsplash)

I believe in a God that hears prayers and answers them. I've witnessed the miraculous gift of answered prayer. And, I want to pray for you. I've started weekly Power of Prayer post every Thursday. We are now on week 78. If you are needing prayer in an area of your life, please leave a comment and I'll commit to pray for your need or request. You can be as general or as specific as you like. Whether it be for healing, salvation, finances, emotions, or another area of life, I'd like to lift it up in prayer.

Things To Do With Dad - Children's Book Review and Giveaway

I received book for review from Candlewick Press.  The opinions within this post are of my own and I was not influenced in any way.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.

Book Overview:

A morning of fun with Dad takes a turn for the boring when a long to-do list interferes. At first content to let Dad cross things off his list, the boy in the story soon realizes that the whole day will be spent on chores — unless he can come up with a solution. In his singularly expressive, kid-friendly style, author-illustrator Sam Zuppardi crafts a colorful celebration of the fun that can be had with just a little imagination — and a trusty green crayon.

Can a young boy figure out how to turn an obstacle into an opportunity in this nearly wordless picture book?
My Review:

A hardcover book with very few words, Things To Do With Dad is illustrated with a boy and his father.  The lad wants his dad's attention but the father is busy with work and chores.  The boy becomes sad so he makes a list of how the two can do the chores together in a fun and imaginative way.  For instance, the task of making the beds turns into sailing a pirate ship.  They both realize that they can do chores and tasks together, in a fun manner.

Father's Day has come and gone for this year but that doesn't mean we shouldn't recognize dads every day.  This book shows ways that a father and his son can bond together by letting loose and using their imaginations.

Win It!

One person will win a hardcover book copy of Things To Do With Dad.

*This is a Rafflecopter giveaway open to residents of the USA.*
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Zak Designs: Free Measuring Cup Set with Orders Over $25

This post contains an affiliate link.  The opinions within this post are of my own and I was not influenced in any way.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.
Zak Designs makes everyday meals a little more special by creating safe, innovative and fashionable products that add a touch of color and an element of fun to tables around the world.

Receive a Free 4-piece Measuring Cup Set with orders over $25 at zak.com:

Receive a FREE 4pc Measuring Cup Set with orders over $25 at Zak.com. Promo Code ZAKVF. Valid 6/1/17 Through 6/30/17 - SAVE NOW!

It's National Selfie Day


Selfie: 
noun, Informal.
1. a photograph taken with a smartphone or other digital camera by a person who is also in the photograph, especially for posting on a social media website.

Get out the selfie stick and practice your pose.  Today is all about the selfies!  

GetFruity is holding a Twitter contest in celebration of today if you follow them @GetFruityBar and retweet their National Selfie Day post.
Selfie with my son

Wordful Wednesday - Swimming


I don't mind swimming but I mind the crowds.  I don't want to be buttholes to elbows with people I barely know.  A couple friends of ours own a private pool and we've been indulging in that.  There's usually no more than ten people at a time.


Swimsuit Selfie

Baby frog on T.J.'s chest

Once in a while a little critter will be found when cleaning out the filters.  T.J. is all boy and loves playing with the bugs and frogs, even naming them before they're released.

Shelby catching some rays

If we don't feel like dipping in the water, there's plenty of chairs to sit in and get some sun.

Adam, T.J. and Azra

Have you been swimming this summer?  
Do you own a pool?
Do you prefer to swim in pools, lakes, or beaches?

Teletubbies: Bubbles - DVD Giveaway

I received no product or compensation for this post.  This post is in partnership with PR firm.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.


TELETUBBIES: BUBBLES

Six All-New Episodes on DVD

Featuring the Teletubbies Singing “Heads, Shoulders, Knees and Toes” and a Special Featurette with the Lovable Laa-Laa!

Families everywhere can get ready to sing, dance and splash with the Teletubbies, when TELETUBBIES: BUBBLES arrives on DVD on June 20. Timed perfectly with “International Bath Day” on June 14, the six all-new episodes feature Tinky Winky, Dipsy, Laa-Laa and Po as they sing, dance, play and of course, eat Tubby Custard! TELETUBBIES: BUBBLES includes two all-new engaging featurettes: In the first, fans can join the Teletubbies as they sing the classic song, “Heads, Shoulders, Knees and Toes”; in the second, little ones can learn more about Laa-Laa, the sweet, song and dance-loving yellow Teletubby!

Synopsis:
The Tubby Custard Machine is making lots and lots of Tubby Custard bubbles! Join the Teletubbies as they chase and pop bubbles, play with a magical music box and dance the energetic Tubby Phone Dance. Contains six new episodes, including “Bubbles”.

Bonus Features Include:
·         “Heads, Shoulders, Knees and Toes” Song
·         Meet the Characters: Laa-Laa

TELETUBBIES: BUBBLES has a run time of approximately 74 minutes. The collection is not rated.

Win It!

One person will win a Teletubbies: Bubbles DVD.

*This is a Rafflecopter giveaway open to residents of the USA.*
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