Shut the Front Door, Shutterfly!

I had to take a minute to let you guys know about some offers from Shutterfly. Now is the time to get that vacation photo book made (or baby book that is a year overdue). Stock up on freebies now and hold them for birthdays, holidays, whatever. You still have to pay shipping on most of these offers, but you are still getting a great deal. Just click on the red text below for the product you want to check out.

All customers enjoy one free 20-standard finish page 8×8 hard photo cover photo book with promo code SUNNYBOOK at checkout! Offer valid 6/24-30/2015.

Offer expires June 30, 2015 (11:59 P.M. PT). Offer is good for one free 20-standard finish page 8×8 hard photo cover photo book through shutterfly.com, our mobile-friendly site or Shutterfly apps. Offer cannot be redeemed more than once per account and/or billing address. Taxes, shipping, and handling will apply. Customer may add options to their 8×8 book (additional pages, StorytellingTM styles and elements, photo book accessories, other cover types, etc.) at additional cost. Alternatively, customer may apply the current price of a 20-standard finish page 8×8 hard photo cover photo book (after taking into account any current discounts on shutterfly.com) toward the purchase of a larger photo book. Not valid on 5×7, 7×9, or 8×8 soft cover photo books, TripPix, prepaid plans, other products and prior purchases. Cannot be redeemed for cash or combined with other offers or credits. Not valid for resale.

All customers enjoy your choice of one free reusable shopping bag or one set of playing cards with promo code PICKAGIFT at checkout! Offer valid 6/24-26/15.

Offer expires June 26, 2015 (11:59 P.M. PT). Offer is good for one free reusable shopping bag or one set of playing cards through shutterfly.com or our mobile-friendly site. Must select one of the two products listed. Offer cannot be redeemed more than once per account and/or billing address. Taxes, shipping and handling will apply. Not valid on other products, prepaid plans, prior purchases, orders placed for in-store pick up and purchases made on the Shutterfly apps. Cannot be redeemed for cash or combined with other offers or credits. Not valid for resale.

All customers enjoy your choice of one free kids placemat or one notepad with promo code CHOOSEONE at checkout! Offer valid 6/27-30/15.

Offer expires June 30, 2015 (11:59 P.M. PT). Offer is good for one free kids placemat or one notepad through shutterfly.com or our mobile-friendly site. Must select one of the two products listed. Offer cannot be redeemed more than once per account and/or billing address. Taxes, shipping and handling will apply. Not valid on pet placemat, other products, prepaid plans, prior purchases, orders placed for in-store pick up and purchases made on the Shutterfly apps. Cannot be redeemed for cash or combined with other offers or credits. Not valid for resale.

While you are ordering these fun gifts, pick up on a card to go with it by using promo code CARD4U and some prints for yourself.

All customers enjoy 100 free 4×6 prints with promo code 100FREEPRINTS at checkout! Offer valid now until 6/30/15.

Offer expires 6/30/2015 (11:59 P.M. PT). Offer is good for 100 free 4×6 prints through shutterfly.com or our mobile-friendly site. Offer cannot be redeemed more than once per account and/or billing address. Taxes, shipping and handling will apply. Not valid on other sizes, other products, prepaid plans, prior purchases, orders placed for in-store pick up and purchases made on the Shutterfly apps. Cannot be redeemed for cash or combined with other offers or credits. Not valid for resale.

Don’t forget, you can get free shipping with orders over $39 by using promo code SHIP39. Go to your account page now and put all of these promo codes in then happy creating!
Shutterfly Free Stuff

*Post contains affiliate links.*

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Time to Get Back in Shape (Plus Armband for Samsung Galaxy S5 Review)

title My husband and I have enjoyed the evolution of our smart phones over the years but our Samsung Galxy S5’s posed a bit of a challenge in the armband department. My husband likes being able to wear his phone on his arm and listen to music while he runs. This Armband for Samsung Galaxy S5 , S4, S3, iPhone 6 (4.7), HTC One & More not only keeps my phone and ID snuggly nearby, it has a slit that can hold a key making it an overall great accessory while out on a run or walk. I do wish the band was a little longer so it would fit around a bigger arm a little easier, but the hook and loop is very strong and it is easy to hand wash and air dry. There are slits to easily access the ear bud inputs and you can’t beat the price at just $7.99. collage Unfortunately, I have been slacking big time in the working out department and really need to get more active again. When I was home, if I wasn’t taking the girls on a hike somewhere, I was taking them and our dog on an afternoon walk. Nowadays, we alternate taking an evening stroll and just letting the girls run around in the yard. I also have a painful case of plantar fasciitis that is finally starting to feel better so my foot isn’t hurting so bad on a regular basis. Looking for a little motivation to get back into a work out routine, I reached out to a friend of the family that is Team Beachbody Coach. I have been watching Krystina transform herself over the past year or so and start Project G. She is a bubbly, talented triple threat (dancer, singer, actor) that works as a performer in Orlando, FL by day and is a living Pinterest board by night. 10941854_791850177552545_3635517697862368487_n I asked her for a few quick tips on getting back into a work out routine and here is what she said:

  1. Plan ahead! Actually sit down with your schedule or planner, look at your week coming up, and pencil in your half hour or hour that you will devote to getting your workout in. If it’s actually in ink, you’re more likely to stick to it. But it’s up to you to make that a priority and not schedule anything else on top of it. Treat it like an important meeting- this time it’s just with yourself. What could be more important than that?
  2. Reward yourself for starting! We love a little incentive to get us going. Whether its finding a new fitness app, downloading some new music or finding a fun new pandora/spotify station, or actually treating ourselves to a new workout top, headband, or armband – if we associate starting the something new with fun, we’re more likely to jump in with the positivity we need to be successful.
  3. Find some accountability! Whether it’s a partner in crime or finding an accountability group online, having to check in daily that you are in fact sticking to your new routine does amazing things for getting you going. It’s not just you at home putting it off. There’s someone or even a group out there that’s waiting to see if you’ve gotten it done, to cheer you on, and keep you motivated! Plus, they can commiserate with you when you’re having a tough work out day. I guarantee that even on a bad day, they’ll push you to stick with it and you’ll be glad you did!

If you need help with the #3, I would recommend visiting Krystina’s Project G page and signing up for one of her challenges. Added bonus: you’ll get to see pictures of her cute puppy and vicariously plan a wedding (she’s getting hitched!). I need to work on #1, scheduling it in and making work out time a priority. I am horrible about making the time to go for a walk or get to the gym. I did, however, pick up a Groupon for some yoga classes this summer, so hopefully I can get back on track. Wish me luck! **I received a free product in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own. Post contains affiliate links.**

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Magnetic Baby Safety Lock Review and Giveaway!

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Ah, baby proofing. Eventually, every baby gets curious about what is on the other side of cabinet doors. Sometimes it’s towels, sometimes it’s cleaning products. It’s more than just about getting baby from making a mess, it’s about keeping them away from the harmful things we unfortunately have to have in our homes and keeping little hands from getting pinched.

In our last home, we were able to run a baby lock with cords through the handles, but in our current home, there is nothing to put a lock on. We are renting so drilling holes in the cabinetry is not an option either. I am happy to share the Purple Safety Magnetic Baby Safety Lock with you as a great alternative for when you can’t or don’t want to drill into cabinets while baby proofing.

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The Purple Safety Lock comprises 4 keys and a single magnetic lock that can open all of them. They are easy to install yourself with no tools, just a little attention to detail. It’s great for any room in the house and can be put on the top, the side, or where ever it works best for you. They won’t leave marks on furniture and can be removed while being hidden in every day use. The written instructions and video made it easy to follow along to install.

Here is your chance to win a set of 4 locks. Contest ends July 4, 2015, 11:59pm. Good luck! Be sure to keep scrolling and check out the rest of the 4th of July Giveaway Hop!

Giveaway Here!

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Welcome to the 4th of July Giveaway Hop hosted by Karen’s Got Mail. I have teamed up with a fantastic group of bloggers to share these giveaways with our readers. Be sure to hop around to the participating blogs and enter some fabulous giveaways! Also, make sure to enter the Grand Prize Giveaway which features a $50 Target Gift Card!

Karen’s Got Mail and the 4th of July Giveaway Hop participating bloggers are not responsible for sponsors who do not fulfill their prize obligations.

*This post contains affiliate links. All opinions are my own. A was provided a product at a reduced cost in exchange for my honest review.**

Check out the great offers from Shutterfly going on right now…

Shutterfly Free Stuff

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Wright Company Factory Instameet #WrightFactoryMeet

2015_06_13_9854 My family and I went to our first Instameet this past weekend. A collaboration with National Aviation Heritage, Wright Memorial Library, and DaytonGram allowed the public into the Wright Company Factory building that is currently vacant and is going to be undergoing renovations soon. Check hashtag #wrightfactorymeet on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter to see everyone’s images. instagram photo 1 It has severed as a production facility for a few different businesses over the years and it was very interesting to see the layered in evidence in this old building. I really hope to be able to participate in something like this again in the future. 2015_06_13_9859 2015_06_13_9910 2015_06_13_9872 2015_06_13_9865 2015_06_13_9935 2015_06_13_9927 2015_06_13_9907 2015_06_13_9902 2015_06_13_9900 2015_06_13_9896 2015_06_13_9864 2015_06_13_9925 2015_06_13_9919 I seem to have developed a mild crush on all of the peeling paint. 2015_06_13_9886 2015_06_13_9873 2015_06_13_9934 2015_06_13_9918 Outside of the building, nature it doing its best to reclaim the grounds. 2015_06_13_9957 2015_06_13_9962 2015_06_13_9964 We took our girls with us. Aubrey stayed in the carrier the entire time we were inside the building to keep her away from anything harmful. We gave Kelsey her “little blue camer” (not a typo, that’s how she pronounces camera) so she could take photos, too. 2015_06_13_9932 2015_06_13_9936 Here are a few of Kelsey’s photos. Are there any good photo spots near you?

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Joy Williams VENUS Album Review

Joy Williams is known as one half of the four-time Grammy-winning folk-rock duo The Civil Wars. They had discussed the possibility of releasing solo albums eventually, but after the duo’s break up in 2014, Joy found herself ready to write and ready to find her own voice. In all honesty, I am not familiar with The Civil Wars, so I am able to hear this album with a fresh perspective. The polished sound obviously comes from a veteran of the music industry but it still sounds fresh and new.

Joy Williams VENUS, being released on June 29, 2015, is an honest recounting of the past two years of her life, dealing with the break up of The Civil Wars, moving, motherhood. While they are personal to her, they are also universal and I found myself connecting to many of them.

About the album, Joy says, “For me, it’s my coming-of-age album, becoming the woman I’ve always wanted to be. I think over the course of the last couple of years making this album, I finally felt that I stepped into my own skin. I’ve spent my whole life trying to be the best version of myself, and I’ve finally let myself just be me.” Isn’t that we are all trying to do? She goes on to say the themes of this record are “Acceptance. Transcendence. Trans-formation. Letting go of things that don’t serve you.”
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Overall, Joy’s voice is smooth and clear. Haunting at some times, vivid at others. The instrumental tracks behind her are soothing and melodic in some songs and powerful and others. Yet, the 11 track album is cohesive and flows together nicely making in enjoyable played through.

My personal favorites:

Welcome Home – My absolute favorite song on this album is the one that also makes me a little misty eyed. It perfectly captures a mothers love. It starts by giving voice to the moment you meet your child and, to me, checks in at points of life throughout. Just wait, this song will be everywhere next Mother’s Day; it’s just beautiful.

Until the Levee – To me, this song comes from that moment in your life when you just can’t keep taking more on and you just have to let go, let the flood happen, move on, and get a new perspective.

Woman (Oh Mama) – Discusses all the facets of life that woman encompass, sometimes all in one day. The pulsing rhythm of the singers in the background electrifies this song. I don’t know about you, but I can’t help but start dancing in my chair when this song comes on.

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You can purchase VENUS at:

*I-Tunes:http://bit.ly/JOYWILLIAMSVENUS

*Amazon: http://bit.ly/VenusAlbumJoyWIlliams

 

Connect to Joy Williams here:

* Official Joy Williams website: http://www.joywilliams.com

* Twitter – @joywilliams

* Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/joywilliamsmusic

* YouTube – https://www.youtube.com/user/JoyWilliamsVEVO

*Instagram – https://instagram.com/joy__williams/

 

I participated in the Joy WIlliams Venus album review program as a member of One2One Network. I was provided an album to review but all opinions are my own.

Getting Ready for Summer Fun (DIY Popsicles and Magnetic Screen Door Review)

POPSICLE HEADER Summer is upon us! I don’t know about your children, but mine could be outside all day long if I let them. If we are home, we are likely outside riding bikes, playing with water, tending to the gardening, or creating sidewalk art with chalk or paints. When the girls play in the backyard, I can work in the kitchen or sit at the table and work on something. We often have the windows open, weather permitting, and I love the idea of having the door open to see and hear them and allowing them to come in and out, but hate the thought of bugs getting in. I had the opportunity to review this Mega Mesh Premium Magnetic Screen Door and it has lived up to its expectations. It took minutes to install with no tools. The door so easily my 4 year old, 1.5 year old and large dog figured it out quickly and it even closes itself. I like that the mesh is fine enough to keep even the smallest bugs out but I can still clearly see through it and it lets air and sunshine in. It even comes with a 12 month money back guarantee so that gives me confidence that it will hold up against my children and animals. I will say that I wish it was a little wider as I think I have an average door and it fit perfectly into the inside frame. I also would enjoy if it had magnets or some other weight along the bottom as my cat quickly figured out to slide out under it. mesh collage All that playing outside gets my girls wanting something cold to enjoy. If you aren’t making popsicles at home, you are missing out on one of the easiest and healthiest dessert and snack options around. Even in the winter, I’ll make them with leftover smoothie so they’ll be ready to enjoy. Molds come in all shapes and sizes but I personally like molds with a little drip catcher and straw like this Ice Pop Maker Mold Set. popsicle names

** Check out my Heroes of the City Prize Pack Giveaway (thru 6/18/15) to learn more about Heroes of the City videos and crafting shows on YouTube! **

My 4 year old is still stuck on the “winter” setting and after playing outside for a while one morning she asked for hot chocolate. I decided to come up with a Frozen Hot Chocolate popsicle instead. They have a very creamy texture but still has that “hot cocoa” taste to it. These are definitely a dessert, but so yummy!

  • Frozen Hot Chocolate
    • Stir 1 Tablespoon Hershey’s cocoa powder, 1/2 cup white sugar together on the stove. Add 1/4 cup milk, and bring to a boil over medium high heat until smooth.
    • Lower heat then stir in an individual container of vanilla yogurt, 1 packet of hot cocoa mix, and 1/2 cup of milk.
    • Once it is smooth, pour into into molds and freeze.

Did you buy a little too much produce? Did you make a little too much of that last smoothie or puree? Using a few other simple ingredients, you can turn them into a delicious snack that keeps you in control of the ingredients.

  • Watermelon Cucumber – This was the result of too much seedless watermelon and too little time to eat it. We also had a portion of a huge cucumber left. I blended these together with a splash of vanilla simple syrup and splash of lime juice.
  • Iced Coffee – We had half a pot of good coffee left over that I really didn’t want to just pour down the drain. Thankfully, I also had some empty molds so I stirred in some milk and homemade vanilla syrup and poured it straight into the molds. These will be a nice pick-me-up for my husband and I on a hot afternoon.
  • Strawberry Yogurt – We had some strawberries on hand and my daughter recently starting requesting strawberry yogurt. This was about 2 cups of cut strawberries, 1 individual container of strawberry Greek yogurt, and a splash of berry blend juice combined in the blender until smooth. Yogurt in a popsicle is a great way to get kids that don’t usually like yogurt to eat it without a fuss and gives your popsicle a creamy, instead of icy, texture.

The great thing is that you don’t have to get fancy or even exact with recipes. Check out how happy popsicles make this little girl! popsicle laugh Collage *I was provided with a free product through Tomoson in exchange for my honest and unbiased review. All opinions are my own. Post contains affiliate links.