Friday, April 29, 2022

STARLUX DIVE DIAMONDS - Review

Although the campground I frequent is now open for the season, the pool won't be open for another couple weeks.  When it does open, I know I'll be among many ready to swim and play in the water.  

As an adult I'm always excited about things that light up, so I can only imagine how young ones see the wonder in it.  Starlux Games Dive Diamonds are game pieces that light up and go underwater.  Kids (and adults) can use the Dive Diamonds to play games in the pool.  For instance, the person to find and grab all three pieces wins.  


I received a sample piece of the three Dive Diamonds.  The gems are made of hard plastic and are crafted to land upright.  I know it's a light-up water toy for younger kids, but I can see the appeal for adults as well.  It's such a simple gadget, yet so fun.  I can't wait for the kids (and myself) to play with it in the campground pool.

I received product for review.  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.

Precious Moments: Free Mug with Purchase


There’s no time to waste! Mother's Day is nearly upon us and Precious Moments has a deal for you!  They are offering a free mug with the purchase of $25 or more. Their selection of unique Mother’s Day gifts, including figurines, garden gifts, and Disney-themed gifts, are the perfect way to celebrate and share precious moments with moms everywhere.

Promotion Details

Coupon code: FORMOM

Offer: Free Mom mug with any purchase of $25 or more

Value: $16.00

Ends: 5/8/22

This post contains affiliate links.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.

Monday, April 25, 2022

Petmate: 20% Off Arm & Hammer Pet Products

20% Off Arm & Hammer products with code SPRING20 at Petmate.com 4/22-4/28/22.

20% Off Arm & Hammer with code SPRING20 (4/22-4/28) at Petmate.

Pet products to keep life fresh, including dispensers, disposable waste bags, litter boxes and pooper scoopers.

T&C's: Code SPRING20 valid for 20% off Arm & Hammer products at Petmate.com 4/22-4/28/2022 11:59pm CST. One use per customer only. Not valid on sale items, previous purchases or when combined with other offers.

This post contains affiliate links.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.

Whitney Wins Everything - Children's Book Review and Giveaway


Book Overview:

From the author of the beloved children's book Milo Does Not Like Mornings comes the highly anticipated second book in the Tiny Ninja Books collection; Whitney Wins Everything.

Whitney is an athlete, a competitor, a powerhouse. Whitney loves to win and knows that everybody loves a winner. But when she isn't invited to a classmate's birthday party because she'll "win all the games," Whitney is confused. Now, Whitney wonders if her Tiny Ninja might be right, could there actually be more than one way to win?  Find out in Whitney Wins Everything.

Every book in the Tiny Ninja Books collection centers on the idea that we are each born with our own Tiny Ninja who is the very best version of us; brave, strong, compassionate and kind. Our Tiny Ninjas are always there for us, all we have to do is listen.

Product Details:

Price: $10.99
Publisher: Gatekeeper Press
Publish Date: April 05, 2022
Pages: 44



My Review:

I'm surrounded by toddlers and tikes in my family, some who are into sports.  I believe that everyone should try their best, but I also believe that playing sports and games should be fun first and foremost.  It's amazing to win, and accolades should be given.  But it's not the be all, end all.

With illustrations that are cutesy and engaging, Whitney Wins Everything tells the tale of a little girl who's a pro at everything she does.  Whitney is the best of the best and is very proud of it.  But, she thinks that everything should be a win/win situation and she accepts nothing less.  A friend doesn't want to invite her to a birthday party because she's afraid Whitney will be too competitive.

Whitney's "Tiny Ninja" (an angel on your shoulder, of sorts) lets Whitney know that winning is good, but it's not the end of the world if she loses.  Whitney plays a soccer game and ends up letting another teammate get the goal.  She's then invited to the birthday party.  In the end, Whitney learns that the world doesn't revolve around her and she can still have a good time, win or lose.

I love the message this story conveys and think it's a story with valuable points.  There's even pages where kids can interact and try to find "Tiny Ninjas" in the illustrations.


Win It!

Five winners will win a Whitney Wins Everything paperback children's book.

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

I received book for review.  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.
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Sunday, April 24, 2022

Heck Of An Easter - 2022

our decorated eggs

 For the last couple years we've kind of gotten away with doing the traditional family meal for Easter.   Immediate and extended family get together for other holidays, but not recently with Easter.  Jason and I spent the holiday with friends at Woodyz Acres Campground in Missouri.

just me, on a Friday night

Friday night several of us adults decorated Easter eggs using the  Bunny EggMazing Egg Decorator.  I know it's geared towards children, but we had a blast with it.  So fun, and super easy.  The next day we peeled the eggs and used them for deviled eggs.  Then I lost a bunch of my quarters playing Left Center Right.

Ginny and Henry's Easter baskets, all stuff from Dollar General

Saturday started off with an Easter egg hunt for the kids.  We threw out over 1000 eggs for kids to find.  Some had candy, while others had prize slips for plush bunnies, and filled Easter baskets.  Allyson brought over Henry and Ginny to participate, then brought them to our camper to get baskets from me and Jason.

Allyson and Henry

We then gathered at our friend's camper for a large meal.  Approximately 15 of us gathered for the feast.  We had smoked ham, potato salad, sweet potatoes, green bean casserole, corn casserole, strawberry fluff salad, cupcakes, bacon-wrapped asparagus, and deviled eggs.

my plate of delicious food

Later that evening, several of us spent what seemed like eternity trying to stuff plastic eggs with glow sticks.  It was definitely not the easiest thing in the world to do.  Kids then went on a hunt for the glow stick eggs.

Jessica helping fill the umpteen eggs with glow sticks

Sunday morning was cold (like the rest of the weekend) but 12 of us got together for an Easter church service put on by my husband.  It was held outdoors at the Mark Twain Amphitheater with a beautiful backdrop of nature.  (Fun Fact: The Amphitheater is now no longer in use and is owned by the campground but it used to be a thriving place for people to sit outdoors near the lake and watch a reenactment of Tom Sawyer and Becky Thatcher).

With that, we at leftovers with friends then went home and took a nap.

How was your Easter?

Friday, April 22, 2022

Merle Norman Merle's Pearls - Review and Giveaway


I'm by no means a beauty expert and couldn't even tell you how to create a perfect smoky eye. I could definitely use pointers on correct makeup application. I do, however, wear makeup almost every day. I've tried many, many brands and shades. I like to experiment with different colors. Although I'm not qualified to explain how to flawlessly apply makeup, I think I'm fairly well-versed in which brands are worth the buy.  I've been a fan of Merle Norman Cosmetics for a while now and was excited to try their Merle's Pearls.  

Merle's Pearls are a gorgeous, limited edition pearl collection which delivers a dreamy, translucent satin finish when dusted over any skin tone. The Gift Set includes Italian-made multicolored Powder Pearls in a jewel faceted jar and angled Powder Brush.  A magical swirl of sparkle exactly embodies the essence of Merle Norman.  Merle's Pearls are available while supplies last in Studios and on the website. SRP is $54.


Let's face it, we buy makeup for the product itself.  But, it's always a bonus if it's packaged and presented beautifully.  Merle's Pearls come in a red gift box with a red bow on top.  The packaging gives an impression of elegance and quality.

There's something about that healthy summer glow that has us feeling fabulous. But when seasons change we lose that sun kissed look and need a little boost.  Merle's Pearls deliver a translucent satin finish when dusted over any skin tone.  To apply, all you need to do is swirl the powder brush over the pearls then apply to your face.  Using Merle's Pearls gives my facial profile a nice, subtle glow.  It isn't weighty and gives my face a summery, polished look.  

Win It!

One person will win Merle Norman Merle's Pearls. (ARV $54)

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

I received product for review.  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.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Dylan's Candy Bar: Extra 20% Off Sale Items

Visit DylansCandyBar.com

 This weekend only, Dylan's Candy Bar is having a sale on sale! Check out the details below.  This sale is while supplies last.  

EXTRA 20% OFF SALE! Use code SPRINGSALE for an extra 20% off already discounted sweets and treats at DylansCandyBar.com! Orders $50+ ship free every day!  Offer is available 4/22 - 4/24, 11:59 pm EST.

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This post contains affiliate links.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.

Thursday, April 14, 2022

Life Lately - National TC Week and Camping Opener

 I definitely can't say I've been bored.  Life's been busy lately, but in a good way...mostly.

shower area just outside the float chamber

Still Waters Float Center held a FB giveaway in February and I was one of the winners for a float session.  I did it once before, almost a year ago and was pumped to do it again.  The second time around went much better than the first since I had more of an idea on how to relax and let myself go.

Floating consists of stepping inside a chamber into a large tub filled with water and Epsom Salt.  The salt allows your body to be buoyant and lay atop the water.  A darkened room with twinkling lights and meditative music allow your mind to meditate and relax...completely nekkid.  It's not something I'd do regularly but will definitely go back for another session in the next few months.

Have you ever done a float session?


inside the float chamber

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These vehicles resembling CARS characters are part of the campground decor.

Camping season has officially opened for Woodyz Acres.  A lot of our weekends will be spent there for the next few months.  Myself and three other gals are in charge of Activities this year and have several fun things planned for the kids and adults.

I said Yes to This Dress!

Speaking of campground activities, one event we have planned for July is an Adult Prom.  I know it's still months away but I'd been shopping for a dress since March.  Since it's Prom Season now, a lot of secondhand shops have their dresses out for sale.  

I went to The Crossing Thrift Store in town and purchased two dresses because I couldn't decide on which one I wanted.  Then I went to the Goodwill and bought one I liked better.  After all that purchasing, I ended up finding "The One" in my sister's closet.  Not sure what I'm going to do with the other three now, but I'm sure someone in the campground could use them.
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front of tumbler

This week is National TC week to recognize all 9-1-1 Dispatchers and Telecommunicators.  We've been blessed so far with food and treats everyday.  The police, sheriff, and ambulance departments have all brought in goodies.  A fellow co-worker made each employee a tumbler with personalized with our names.  It feels nice to be appreciated, if only once a  year.


back of tumbler
"Everyone Goes Home"

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I won two tickets from a local radio station on FB for the Quincy Community Theater's production of MAME.  My friend, Ali, went with.  MAME is a musical based upon a 1955 novel.  The first half hour of the show started off slow, but the last 1.5 hour of the production was quite impressive.  The cast and crew did a great job.
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Jason and David, part of my "support team"

Late March I had a colonoscopy and endoscopy (i.e. up the butt and down the throat) due to nausea, rapid weight loss, and vomiting.  Results show I have an acute inflamed stomach and ulcers.  Not much can be done about it except to let it run its course for however many more months, and take Zofran.  On the plus side, I've lost 20+ pounds.

The day before consisted of drinking a ton of Gatorade mixed with Miralax and Dulcolax.  As you can guess, much of my time was spent on the porcelain throne.  But I had the best support team of friends who spent the day with me to make sure "everything came out all right".  


Bruise on my arm several days later from the IV
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My grandson, Waylon, is 6 1/2 months old now.  I spent part of yesterday visiting with him.  His sweet smile and loud squeals melt my heart.  Speaking of grandsons, Logan and his lady will be having my third grandson in early July.  I'm in the planning stages of a baby shower.  Their baby room will have a Noah's Ark theme.



Logan stopped by a couple weeks ago with the granddog, Winston.  Little guy got to take his first bath at my house after he found a pile of poo to play in.

So, tell me, how have you been?

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

TOCCA Reed Diffusers - Review and Giveaway

Diffusers and fresheners are a big part of my home.  I want my place to smell inviting and free from odors.  I was recently reached out to by TOCCA to try one of their reed diffusers, and I was happy to oblige.  I'd never heard of TOCCA before, but I'm definitely someone who appreciates the company now.

TOCCA evokes an escape to a beloved place or time of romance and old-world charm.  The company specializes in perfumes, home fragrance, and bath & body products.  There are five fragrances available in the Girls Collection of reed diffusers;  I received the Giulietta fragrance.  Each reed diffuser from this collection comes in a beautifully detailed, round gift box.  Inside the box are several diffusers and a custom made cut glass container that holds the fragrance.  Once you've pulled the plastic plug off the top of the glass container, all you need to do is insert the reeds and take in the aroma.  To intensify the scent, occasionally flip the reeds.

The main notes of Giulietta  are sweet green apples and blooming pink tulips.  It's a combination of scents I've never experienced before.  And, I absolutely love it!  The fragrance isn't overbearing but definitely noticeable.  I seriously am enamored with the smell, and the diffuser itself looks quite elegant atop my shelf.  

The TOCCA Voyage Diffusers retail for $35 and the Girls Collection Diffusers retail for $48.  The entire TOCCA collection is available at TOCCA.com, Nordstrom, Anthropologie, Bluemercury, and specialty stores nationwide.



Win It!

One person will win a TOCCA Reed Diffuser.

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

I received product for review.  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.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, April 11, 2022

My Take on Hello Fresh's Food Subscription Service

our One-Pan Santa Fe Pork Tacos

I'll give props to my husband; he's an amazing cook. He will make up a concoction and it will come out tasting like a gourmet meal. I'm not quite as gifted. I'm the one that usually comes up with the meal plans, while he's the one that executes them. I get creative from time to time, but don't really venture with new or foreign ingredients.

A few years ago, I discovered some "food home delivery kits" that gives me all I need to create marvelous cuisine. All the ingredients and recipes are provided for the meal plans and all I have to do is follow the instructions. Hello Fresh  has made it easy for me to fix meals that are tasty and out of the ordinary.  I'm not a consistent subscriber, but do order their meal delivery plans from time to time.   A couple weeks ago I ordered three meals for me and my husband.  


Hello Fresh is a home meal delivery service that delivers portioned ingredients you need to cook delicious, chef inspired and seasonal recipes at home. They offer plans specifically for two, four, or six people.  The ingredients are fresh and sourced from Chicago's highest quality food suppliers with recipes created by seasoned chefs. Recipe cards are included for each meal, with detailed directions and pictures. All Home Chef meals are priced at $9.95 per serving

To join Hello Fresh, you simply create an account, select your dietary preferences, number of meals per week, and your delivery day. New recipes are available each week.  Based upon dietary preferences, Hello Fresh selects which meals you will most likely be interested in.  However, you can select and deselect to get the meals you truly want. 

I received a 2 person meal plan from Hello Fresh.  I was able to go on the site and go through the steps to set up delivery.  I first went through a generalized checklist, giving my food preferences.  For instance, I could indicate that I didn't like or eat pork and it would not be sent to me.  I was able to view all the week's recipes and ultimately select which meals I for sure wanted to receive.  Hello Fresh sends weekly deliveries Tuesday through Friday. You can select the day of week that’s most convenient for you. 

I recently re-activated my Hello Fresh account and ordered 3 meals, enough for two people.  I went with the Melty Montery Jack Burgers, Walnut Coated Chicken, and the One-Pan Santa Fe Pork Tacos.  I'll be honest and say I wasn't a big fan of the Walnut Coated Chicken meal, but the other two were beyond amazing!


When my delivery arrived, it was packaged very well.  The food was insulated with insulated liners and gel packs, so it wasn't necessary for me to pickup the package as soon as it arrived at my doorstep.  The food itself was tightly sealed and packaged. 

 The recipe cards for each meal were easy to follow.  Prep time for each meal was approximately 15 minutes, and cook time for each one took approximately 40 minutes.  The only extra ingredients I needed to provide myself was olive oil, pepper, and salt.

Although a lot of dishes were used for preparation, I almost felt like a master chef after preparing each meal.  They were visually appealing and tasted delectable.  My husband was  just as impressed.  The spice blend for the salmon was a little hot but that's the only thing I wasn't a big fan of.  

The good thing about Hello Fresh is that there's no minimum commitment.  You can skip a delivery or cancel your subscription at any time before the weekly cutoff.  I was quite satisfied with the company and its delivery of fresh ingredients and recipes.

Have you ever used Hello Fresh's services? If you'd like to give them a try, you'll receive $120 off your order!  That's only $2.25 per meal...can't beat that!

Petmate: 20% Off Chuckit!

Get 20% off Chuckit! with code CHUCKIT20 at Petmate.com 4/8-4/14/2022.

 Offer: Get 20% Off Chuckit!

Chuckit! performance toys are designed to take interACTION with your dog to the next level.

Coupon Code: CHUCKIT20

Expiration Date: 04/14/2022

T&C's: Code CHUCKIT20 valid for 20% off Chuckit! items at Petmate.com 4/8-4/14/2022 11:59pm CST. One use per customer only. Not valid on sale items, previous purchases or when combined with other offers. .

This post contains affiliate links.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.

Monday, April 4, 2022

My March Amazon Prime Purchases

 In the beginning of March, I did my best to only purchase items off Amazon that I really needed.  Towards the end of the month, I kinda went wild and bought more than I should have.  Here's some of what I received in March:



I know it's nowhere near Christmas but I purchased these because they were on sale one particular day.  I've put them in my "gift closet" to give to kids during the holidays.  I'm very impressed with the quality and size of these pop fidget toys.

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My husband, bless his heart, isn't the best at sealing bags back up once he's opened them.  For instance, I purchased a bag of mixed vegetables and he opened them.  After he was done, he put the bag back in the fridge but didn't ensure it was tightly sealed.  So, as a solution for mixed vegetables, I ordered this food storage container.  It has a vacuum seal lid to ensure veggies and other foods stay fresher longer.  And, it heightens the likelihood that Jason will make sure the lid is closed.


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Camping season officially started last weekend.  Jason and I purchased a new (to us) camper a few months ago and I needed a new shower curtain for it.  I decided the bathroom theme would be gnomes, so I went with this shower curtain.

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I've become a fan of backpack purses and only sport that style now.  My last purse got doused in soy sauce (long story!) so I needed a new one.  After looking on Amazon for what seemed like hours, I finally settled on this one.  When it came in the mail, I was very impressed with the quality and all the features but it was much to large to carry around as a purse.  So, I've decided to use it as my work bag to store my iPad, folders, and work papers. 


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My son, Logan, and his woman are expecting a baby in July.  I'm co-hosting a baby shower sometime in May and have been purchasing baby gifts here and there for the couple.  This cute patterned gift set caught my eye and I think they will really like it.

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Because the first backpack was too big to use as a purse, I purchased this one to use instead.  It's a tad bit smaller than what I envisioned but it works for all of my stuff.  Plus, it's super cute.



I bought a few more things in the Month of March, but these are the big items.  What have you purchased from Amazon lately?  Since I'll be hosting a baby shower soon, have any ideas on fun and/or original games to play?

Friday, April 1, 2022

Fun Easter Basket Gifts for Kids


 Sunday, April 17th is Easter this year.  You have just a little over two weeks to get gifts and goodies together for the kids' baskets.  Here are a few fun recommendations:

Jelly Belly is known for their jelly beans and confections.  Just a few months ago, the company launched sugar-free Jelly Belly gum.   It is sugar-free and available in four flavors:  Very Cherry, Watermelon, Island Punch and Berry Blue. All flavors are available in blister packs.  Two of the flavors - Watermelon and Berry Blue - are available in a plastic container that holds 55 pieces of gum. 
Which flavor would your kids like best? 



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The mess-free, Easter phenomenon is back! If you’re not familiar, the bunny-shaped decorator holds and spins hard-boiled eggs while you hold a marker to the spinning egg, creating stripes, lines and other fun designs!  Plus, the Bunny EggMazing Egg Decorator comes with NEW pastel-colored markers.  Available on Amazon for $27.99.

If you want your kids to be more independent and hands-on while decorating eggs for Easter, this genius invention will be right up your alley.  It's so easy to use and gives each egg a neat striped, colorful design.  Each kit includes one EggMazing Spinner and 8 colorful non-toxic markers.  It does require 4 AA batteries which will have to be purchased separately.  



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The Hog Wild Toys’ Chocolate Bunny Popper will have your kids going hog wild with laughter.  With six pastel foam balls included you won’t want to miss the satisfying ‘POP' when they shoot out of the bunny. Great for indoor or outdoor play and available on Amazon for $12.99.  When the bunny's "eggs" shoot out from behind, they go quite a distance.  The balls are made of foam, so they won't cause harm (although I wouldn't recommend shooting them at a person's face!).  



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Today (April 1st) Starlux Games released Eyeballs of Madness as available for purchase.  It's a strategic, carrot-flinging, eyeball-knocking lawn game that includes 14 eyeballs, 14 eye stalks (stands), and one squishy Throw Carrot.  

 Players must use brains and agility as they toss the squishy Throw Carrot at “eyeballs” of various hidden points, which the opposing team has strategically placed on their side of the lawn. The first team to get to 21+ points wins.  It retails for $29.90, and is for 2-6 players.  



Which of these items would you add to your kids' Easter baskets?