Tuesday, April 30, 2019

PhillySwirl Frozen Novelties - Review and Giveaway

With lively tastes and eye-popping packaging, PhillySwirl frozen novelties are refreshing, enjoyable, and fun to consume. These sweet treats are colorful, classic Italian ices swirled into a variety of products.  

PhillySwirl frozen novelties were a big hit at my house.  I think they'd be great to serve at summer parties, birthdays, and other events. They appeal to a variety of people because they taste delicious, are colorful, and are free of the top eight allergens. They are dairy free, gluten free, and contain no high fructose corn syrup. They're frozen deliciousness that most anyone can consume. 

What I really like about the PhillySwirl Frozen Novelties is that there's different assorted flavors in each box, and there's different varieties to try.  Rather than having just one flavor to choose from, there are several.  And the flavor combinations are somewhat out of the ordinary from what you'd normally find. 

Very Berry flavored SwirlStix

Everyone's absolute favorite are the PhillySwirl Candy Spoonz.  They are the most appealing because they are unusual and fun to eat.  It consists of Italian ice in a cup with lollipop-like candy spoons to scoop it out.  The spoons are little, wide popsicle sticks with the lollipop-like flavoring on it.  Each spoon has a different flavoring.  Don't get weirded out, but I have to admit that there was once when we even took turn trading spoons with each other to see how they tasted with each Italian ice.  

PhillySwirl can be found in your grocer's freezer.  To find where PhillySwirl products are sold near you, visit the product locator page at www.phillyswirl.com/store-finder.

Win It!

Four people will each win five free product coupons for a free box of PhillySwirl frozen novelties.

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

I received products for review from J&J Snack Foods.  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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Cheesy Corn Casserole - Recipe

Cheesy Corn Casserole is a dish that our family usually serves during holidays.  But, I will make it once in a while to serve as a side with our meat for supper.


1 can creamed corn
2 cans whole corn (drained)
1 1/2 cup sour cream
1 stick melted butter
1 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 boxes Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix
chopped spring onions for garnish



Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Coat or grease large casserole dish.

Mix all ingredients together in large bowl, minus the onion.
Transfer to casserole dish, then top with diced onion.

Bake uncovered for 45 minutes.

Eat, eat, then eat some more!

Monday, April 29, 2019

GourmetGiftBaskets.com Gardening Gift Basket - Review

 GourmetGiftBaskets.com, one of the top, online, family-owned gifting companies, has rolled out some new items for Mom's Big Day (aka Mother's Day!).  Celebrate your mom and the other special ladies in your life with a gift basket from GourmetGiftBaskets.com  

New from GourmetGiftBaskets.com is the Gardening Gift Basket.  This is the perfect gift basket for the gardening enthusiast in your life. Not only does it include essential gardening tools, it also features delicious gourmet treats to power gardening Moms through all of their hard work planting and weeding. 

Contents of the basket include:

Garden Cultivator by Fiskars 10.5" - Loosens and aerates soil, and removes weeds from the garden.

Garden Trowel by Fiskars 11.5" - This essential gardening tool is durable yet lightweight for easy handling, and will make tackling tough soil a breeze.

Garden Transplanter by Fiskers - A useful tool for digging, cultivating and weeding the garden as well as planting and transplanting potted plants.

Sea Salt & Cracked Pepper Kettle Corn by GourmetGiftBaskets.com - 4 oz. 

Chichester Snack Mix by Merrimack Valley Snack Company - 2 oz. - This snack mix of nuts, pretzels, and cheddar crackers will give the gardener in your life all the energy they need to tackle the weeds.

Zesty Lemon Cookie Thins by Mandy's - 4.6 oz. - The perfect citrus cookie to complement your favorite coffee, hot cocoa, or ice cream.

Sugar River Trail Mix by Merrimack Valley Snack Company - 4 oz. - Pretzels, premium nuts and cheddar cracker mix that won't leave you feeling guilty for snacking!

Green Tea Garden by Davidson's - 8 sachets - A combination of cinnamon and chamomile with a base of delicate green tea.

Blueberry, Pomegranate & Almond Orchard Bar by Liberty Orchards - 1.4 oz. - Healthy snack made with premium nuts, pomegranate seeds, and dried fruits like cranberries and blueberries.

Sea Salt Caramel Cookie Straws by Mississippi Cheese Straw Factory - 1 oz. - One to two bite melt-in-your mouth sweet caramel and sea salt shortbread cookies.

Fiskars gardening tools

There's a lot of beautiful items placed inside this gift basket. Everything is wrapped together just right to give a grand presentation, with a large blue ribbon bow as an adornment. For the amount of items included, the price is affordable. The food and drink items are appetizing.  I've been indulging in the snacks.

I don't have much of a green thumb but have started doing some work around the yard.  The Fiskars gardening tools have come in quite handy.  The pretty brown basket that the items came in is a respectable size, and includes a white liner.  I've filled it up with toiletries, and it looks nice on my bathroom shelf.   

GourmetGiftBaskets.com offers a whole array of Mother's Day gift baskets. They also have a fine selection of value-priced gift baskets and gift towers for other holidays, events and celebrations.

I received products 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.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

SuperPretzel Soft Pretzels - Review and Giveaway

Original SUPERPRETZEL Soft Pretzels have been a family favorite snack for years.  I purchase a box every couple of months and they don't last long, considering each person in the household likes the soft pretzels they can top with salt. If we're in the mood for something a little sweeter, we'll microwave a SUPERPRETZEL Sweet Cinnamon soft pretzel.

Whether you choose SuperPretzel Original or SuperPretzel Sweet Cinnamon, they can be found in the frozen snacks section of your local retail store and are available at your local superstore.  There are six soft pretzels to a box.  Each SuperPretzel Sweet Cinnamon pretzel has cinnamon baked into it and cinnamon sugar packets are included to sprinkle on the amount you prefer.  SuperPretzel Original soft pretzels include a salt packet.

Preparing a soft pretzel is easy peasy.  For the Original variety, it's recommended to lightly wet the pretzel with water then sprinkling the desired amount of salt onto it.  I prefer to microwave each pretzel for 40 seconds each.  They come out as a tastefully delicious snack or appetizer.  I'll even dare say they are just as good as soft pretzels you purchase at the mall or fairs.

Win It!

Three people will each win five product coupons for free boxes of SuperPretzel Soft Pretzels.

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

I received products 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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What Can I Do To Have My Facelift Covered? - Guest Post

People often have a multitude of reasons for wanting plastic surgery. Not one to take lightly, this choice is both important and influential. People often spend years or even decades desperately wanting to change their appearance. However, one always-present factor is cost.

Costs of a facelift can run into the quadruple digits, depending on location. Potential patients may be wary because of the costs and may hope that insurance will cover a good portion of that load. However, many insurance companies will be reluctant to cover a wide range of lift procedures.

Individuals have to learn as much as they can about their contract, their insurance company, and their own health circumstances before knowing the connection between lifts and their own insurance coverage.

Lift procedures

There are a wide variety of lift procedures, to begin with. The most common is the facelift — a facial rejuvenation treatment. A facelift involves removing and sometimes tightening the excess skin on your face, smoothing out the wrinkles that were previously there. Then, you would perform regular facial exercises to keep the skin looking as clear and toned as possible. You can often combine this with other facial procedures, like a nose job or eyelid surgery.

You’ll find that the “sagging” look isn‘t there anymore and your face looks tighter and more youthful. But there are definitely some challenges associated with facelifts. It is both time-consuming and involves follow-up care. Because the face is so delicate, expertise matters. Surgeons cut and pull skin close to the orbital bone, the skull, and many of the most important parts of the nervous system. The potential headaches associated with a facelift help lead to the considerable costs associated with the procedure.

What can Insurance do?

Insurance coverage depends on several factors. One key factor is a medical necessity. There are lift procedures that have a medical benefit to them. This auxiliary benefit is similar to the benefits of other forms of plastic surgery such as some Botox injections. The importance of medical benefits is the difference in many insurance policies between necessary or medically relevant surgeries and purely elective procedures.

Most insurance contracts will have a clause where the insurance company will cover a large percentage of the procedure above the deductible and copay if the procedure deals with a medical need. There are also some specifically tailored insurance policies that will pay for plastic surgery. But in most cases, traditional insurance policies will not pay for purely elective benefits. If an individual has a procedure done for purely cosmetic reasons, insurance companies may balk and refuse to help pay for the procedure.

What to do

Anybody interested in a lift procedure needs to first check their insurance contracts. This information may hold the relevant categories that can help to determine whether they will cover the procedure. Before considering such surgery, an individual should also have a detailed medical examination. This examination will help point to any potential problems that an individual might have that could require the facelift. If a person can justify their facelift as both cosmetic and helping to treat an underlying condition, insurance will look more favorably upon the procedure.

There is even a chance that insurance would pay for the procedure when it would not have otherwise. In cases where there is no medical justification, an individual should be in close contact with both their surgeon and their insurance company. They may work an arrangement out where an individual has to pay less than the full advertised price for the procedure. They will never know about this lower price unless they make a serious inquiry. However, without insurance, an individual will most likely have costs that run into the thousands of dollars.

In Closing

Individuals who are facing the prospect of paying for a facelift have many options. They may not have to write a check as there are payment plans available and surgeons who may negotiate their fees depending on an individual’s circumstances. Some individuals may even have a hardship exception or an extenuating circumstance that leads them to receive their treatment free. But for most individuals, they should try as much as they legally can to have their medical procedures covered by their insurance plan. Insurance coverage can help an individual enjoy the benefits of a lift procedure without having to cover massive costs down the line.

For those interested in this procedure, there is no surgeon better than Dr. Andrew Jacono of the New York Center for Facial Plastic & Laser Surgery. Dr. Jacono has decades of experience and is board-certified in Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery as well as Head and Neck Surgery. With a before-and-after gallery that showcases his skill, it’s no wonder why Dr. Jacono is so acclaimed. Dr. Jacono will help ensure that any lifts an individual is interested in, he can perform safely and effectively. For more information, visit the site of this New York facelift specialist today.

I received compensation for this post.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.

Check It Out: Savings.com #ZalesForMom Giveaway

Savings.com is giving away 5 $100 gift cards from Zales to help bring awareness to the great deals Zales is offering on Mother's Day gifts!  Giveaway ends on Friday, May 3rd at 11:59 PM PT.

When shopping Zales, enter the coupon code ZCART15 at checkout to get 15% discount on all orders. Online only, exclusions apply.

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

Four More April Winners

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash

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

The winner of the Slammer Snacks giveaway is #39, Yvonne W.

The winner of the Jelly Bean Blessings children's book giveaway is #23, Edye Nicole.

The winner of the River Rescue children's book giveaway is #20, Victoria Barbour.

The winner of The Long and Short Tail of Colo and Ruff children's book giveaway is #2, Lynne.

Congrats to the winners and thanks to all who entered.  Be sure to enter the currently active giveaways going on.  There's no limit to how many you can enter or how many you can win.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Power of Prayer Thursdays - Week 168

Photo by Efren Barahona on 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 168.  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.

"Keep watch and pray, so that you will not give in to temptation. For the spirit is willing, but the body is weak."
–Mark 14:38

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Wordful Wednesday: Crossing Women's Camp 2019


Last year was the first annual Crossing Women's Camp through our church. I had such a good time that I immediately signed up when it was time to this year. A couple weeks ago I spent Friday night and part of Saturday there with about 50 other women, and I'm already wanting to go back.

Friday night's supper of Parmesan crusted chicken, spaghetti with sauce, and breadsticks

I felt like I'd been transported back to my 12 year old self, being sent away to church camp.  Exploring a new world and meeting new friends.  I was waiting for someone to break out the autograph books.  But, rather than getting to stay a week, we got less than 24 hours.  That's what we get for being adults with responsibilities.

Me, Allyson, and Amanda (Jason's ex-wife)
Goes to show that exes can get along and become "family" (and wear matching shirts!)

One side of the housing building was for bunkers who wanted to get an early start at bed.  Very few gals opted for the 10 pm "Lights Out" option.  Which meant the other side (where I stayed) housed the rest of the women.  Bunks were lined up in prison formation.  Us late-nighters were up till 1 a.m., when the "room mother" shut off the lights. 

My bunk bed
I slept on the bottom

Tisha sportin' a fur coat that was passed around quite a bit.
Karaoke was an absolute blast.  I didn't sing but made one heck of a backup dancer.

Rhonda belting out a song

The scenery of the entire place was so serene and peaceful.  Although our time was spent worshiping God and doing devotionals, there was also a lot of time for fellowship.  Campers had options to make a t-shirt tote bag, play board games, sing karaoke, roller skate, and go on prayer hikes. 

beautiful scenery

dining hall

This year had about half of the attendance of last year.  I actually liked the smaller group better.  It seems that gave us the opportunity to intermingle with other campuses and make more connections.  My only complaint about the entire experience was that it didn't last long enough.  I'm voting for another one in the fall.

Did you ever attend church camp as a kid?  Or as an adult?

roller skating in the gym

Balsam Hill's Sunshine Sale

Balsam Hill is mainly known for their Christmas trees, wreaths and home decor.  But, the company also carries faux florals that would brighten up any home during Spring and Summer.

Balsam Hill is bringing you great deals and huge savings with their Sunshine Sale.  During this sale, receive up to 30% off your favorite florals and plants with free shipping on all items until April 30.

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

The Craft of Faith: Subscription Craft Box - Review and Giveaway

Subscription boxes are all the rage right now.  People seem to love the idea of receiving themed boxes in the mail every month.  One such company is The Craft of Faith, a religious subscription craft box for children ages 5 to 10.  It officially launched in March.

Each monthly box includes four unique crafts - one for the Old Testament, one for the New Testament, one for Proverbs, and one for Psalms.  Each craft is individually packaged and arrives in a box that's designed with illustrations and Bible verses.  With each craft is an instruction card that shows a picture of the completed craft and the scripture on which it is based.

individually packaged crafts and a package of crayons

The Craft of Faith is a monthly subscription box services but it can be paused or cancelled at any time.  If you have more than one child, you can choose to purchase Sibling Boxes so each kid gets the same craft to do each month.  In other words, both brother and sister can get a box that includes all four of the same crafts for each kid so they can work on the same projects without having to share.  

"But Seek" binoculars craft with instructions sheet

The four different craft projects I received were:
"But Seek" binoculars craft
"A Happy Heart" puzzle craft
"In the Beginning" photo frame craft
"The Lord is My Shepherd" shadow box craft

I liken the crafts to something a child may do in Sunday School or at Vacation Bible School.  They're fun to put together and the instructions are easy to follow.  Tape, glue and scissors are additional materials that will need to be on hand.  I think this is a fun and educational way to incorporate scripture and faith into a child's life.

Win It!

One person will win one The Craft of Faith Subscription Box.

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

I received products 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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Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Random Tuesday Thoughts - Easter and Biopsies

Got to visit Chippy on Saturday.  He's still an ugly dog with an attitude.  But, for some reason, he intrigues me.

You know I'm a big fan of Random Tuesday Thoughts, hosted by Stacy Uncorked.  If you're a fan of randomness, link up and play along.

Hangin' with Millard the Bunny
Millard had her picture taken a lot at church.  She deserves tons of carrots for that.

Easter was kinda non-traditional for me.  The kids are grown and were either working or doing their thing, so I attended two church services and went to hang with friends.  Jason had to work all weekend, so he got to hear the church sermon five times.  I'm thinkin' he should have it memorized!

Me and Alaina

My bestie, Alaina, was in town for the weekend so I visited with her on Saturday.  Then she had me over for Easter lunch with her family.  I tend to overeat on the holidays.  There's just so many delicious food choices.

Easter lunch

Deluxe Club Sandwich from Village Inn

As if I wasn't already full from lunch, I got together with another friend for supper at Village Inn.  

I was super happy to know that a work friend invited Adam to church and for Easter lunch afterwards.  Being 11 hours away from family can be hard during the holidays and I was kinda worried how he'd hold up on his first holiday alone.  I know he's a grown boy, but he's still my boy.

our potential home

Pending that all things work out, me and Jason will be buying and living in our first "officially ours" home at the end of May.  We've rented since we've been together and just recently started house hunting.  We didn't get anything extra big or fancy (don't want the huge payment or the extra cleaning) but it's a nice place with 2 bedrooms, 2 full bathrooms, 2-car garage, and a furnished basement.  

I went into the dermatologist yesterday thinking it was going to be routine follow-up.  Instead it turned out to be a scrape biopsy on my elbow and a punch hole biopsy on my face with two stitches.  I get to sport a band-aid on my mug for ten days.  He wants to rule out cancer and lupus since all the creams and pills I've been taken haven't cleared up my skin.  
What's your randomness for the week?  
What did you do for Easter?

We Are the Gardeners - Children's Book Review and Giveaway

Book Overview:

*Ages 4-8

*You and your children can learn all about the Gaines family's story of becoming gardeners in Joanna's first children’s book—starting with the first little fern Chip bought for Jo. Over the years, the family's love for gardening blossomed into what is now a beautiful, bustling garden.

*Julianna Swaney’s illustrations bring the Gaines family garden to life with colorful, whimsical watercolors and invite you to enjoy the beauty of a thriving garden.

My Review:

You may be familiar with Chip and Joanna Gaines of "Fixer Upper" television fame.  They are also well known for their products and designs on Magnolia.  I'm not an ultimate fangirl of the couple but am somewhat familiar with their celebrity status and personal life.

Joanna Gaines, along with her children, have debuted a new children's book that came out in March 2019.  This hardcover book has several enlightening messages.  One is that you shouldn't give up on something even if it seems like a failure.  You should believe in yourself and your efforts.  The second takeaway is a general idea of how gardening works.  Kids will learn that ladybugs protect plants from harm and that weeks can ruin plants if not taken care of quickly.  Another story notation is that the family is working together to cultivate gardens and love.  The similarities between the messages are woven together quite nicely.

Win It!

One person will win We Are the Gardeners children's book.

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

I received book for review from Tommy Nelson.  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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Dylan's Candy Bar: Mother's Day Promotion

Mom's the word! It's time to announce the Dylan's Candy Bar MOTHER'S DAY 2019 COLLECTION and you can get your first look now.

Mother's Day savings are going on right now.  Receive 25% OFF at Dylan's Candy Bar.  Use code MOMQ2 to save on sweets for Mom from now until May 5, 2019.

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