Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Kid Giveaways!

No... I'm not giving away kids, I'm just letting you know about all the fun giveaways that are going on right now that have fun things for your kids!

Erudition Game- This is a new game that has come out that takes kids and adults through a fun trip through literacy land. Kids will have so much fun actively playing this game that will also teach them sight words and sound recognition. I would love to have this game for TJ when he starts reading. What a fun way to teach and also get the family together for a fun night of games. Go to Dad's Blog and check out this giveaway. Giveaway ends July 10.

I Spy A to Z- Book of Picture Riddles- If you haven't ever read an I Spy book then you're missing out on a lot of fun! The pictures are amazing and really make this alphabet book come alive. Your kids will use their imaginations, increase their vocabulary skills, and give them something fun (and educational) to do on those long summer days. There are 5 awards given with this giveaway. The Grand Prize winner gets; Wii Video Game 'Ultimate I Spy', Board Game 'I Spy Memory Game', I Spy A to Z: A Book of Picture Riddles, and I Spy Treasure Hunt. Four Runner-up winners will receive a copy of the new book- I Spy A to Z: A Book of Picture Riddles. Go over to 3 Kids and Us and enter to win today- your kids (and probably your husband) will thankyou! Giveaway ends on July 14.

Nintendo Wii Games- You can win either Wii Pikmin or Wii Mario Power Tennis. Fun games and hours of clean fun entertainment for your kids. Go to Mommy Mandy to sign up today. Giveaway ends on June 24.

Skyrail Marble Roller Coaster- This is a 150-piece construction set that features 27 feet of glow-in-the-dark track. The tracks snap together and are flexible so you can make all sorts of different designs. Fun for any kid or grown-up who still likes being a kid. Go to The Funky Monkey and sign up to win your own Marble Roller Coaster. Giveaway ends on June 27.

Skitter Ride-on Toy Car- These fun riding toys are wonderful for all ages from 18-months to 81-years! No more buying a new ride for your kid every year. They can start on a skitter while they're little and grow up with it while still having fun every day! The kids push off with their feet, while turning the steering wheel handle, which gives them more power to go forward. Go to Mommy Goggles to enter this giveaway which ends on July 5.

Look for more fun kid giveaways on the Giveaway links on the left side bar.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Dryer Sheets, Bananas, and Mosquitos

The state bird in my state is the mosquito (or at least it seems like it is). We can't even go outside right now without being swarmed and attacked. The other day I got 5 bites just going from my front door to my car, and these are not ordinary bites either- some are as big as a nickel! I feel trapped in my house by these little vile vermin and don't know how to protect myself and my family from the little vampires. Are we or are we not a more intelligent species?! We, the human race, who have pushed into extinction so many species on the planet are being trapped inside by a little bug! There's got to be something we can do- someone out there who has spent their life in an endless battle with mosquitoes and knows how to help us kill in greater numbers.

Here is what I've tried when it comes to keeping the bugs off of me:
Dryer Sheets- I've been told that if you keep a dryer sheet in your clothes then the buggers will stay away... hmm... well, I don't know how well it worked since there will still a lot of mosquitoes flying around. If it reduces the number from 5,000 to 2,500 then I don't know how well that really helped.
Bug Spray/Repellent- I hate spraying on noxious chemicals all over my body, I hate the feel of it, and I hate the smell of it. With all the pain it takes to use this stuff- it does seem to help. After a whole can, the bugs around me went from giant swarm to mild nuisance.
Bananas- I've also been told that if I eat bananas then mosquitoes won't find my blood so enticing. I don't know if this has helped either since I still have 12 bites on me right now.

Here is what I've tried when it comes to relieving the horrible pain of the bites:
Banana Peels- I was also told that if you rub a banana peel on your bite then it will help the itch and pain. It felt really good while I was applying it, but didn't help in the least with the pain and itch afterward.
Itch Ointment- I put this on ever bite I had and they still became more swollen the next day and the itch was very very mildly diminished.
Hand Sanitizer with Alcohol- This supposedly kills the parts of the bites that have the poison in them and relieves the itch. It helped slightly, but I had to keep putting it on over and over.

What have you tried that has worked or hasn't worked? Is there some random Grandmother's remedy that will cure my itch or keep the little buggers off of me and my family? What products do you like and use and what should I try? I've gotten to the point where natural remedy or chemical overload will have to do- I'm so sick of being a prisoner in my own house. Help me!

Monday, June 22, 2009

A Cleaner Home

It's fun to get excited to clean your home when you have some fun toys to play with along the way! I don't particularly like cleaning my home day after day, but there are certain things that make cleaning just a little bit better.

My favorite new cleaning product is the Swiffer WetJet. I've struggled for 7 years of marriage with an uncooperative mop that I always had to talk myself into using, and once I did use it all it would do was push the dirt around and get hair on it- yuck! I hated using it, filling up a bucket with PineSol (the smell of which would knock out a baby seal), pushing around dirty suds on the floor, then cleaning off the mop head again and again without it ever getting really clean. Sigh. Enter my WetJet. I know it sounds lame, but what I really wanted for Valentine's Day was a new mop! Hubby wouldn't let me call it a Valentine's Day present, but I got one anyway so I was happy. The best thing about the WetJet is that you just stick on the pad and you're ready to go. You spray, mop, then throw away the pad and you're all done- and the smell is very pleasant and not too strong.

Ok, now for the fun cleaning giveaways that are going on!
7th Generation Cleaning Products- I've started to want to become more "green" lately and these natural cleaning products sound perfect for me. They offer a wide range of products including Carpet Spot & Stain Remover, Kitchen Cleaner, Natural All Purpose Cleaner, Natural Glass & Surface Cleaner, Tub & Tile Cleaner as well as laundry and dish washing products. With my son and dog around most of the time when I clean, I would feel a lot safer getting a great clean without the harsh chemicals. Go to Shake the Salt to sign up for this giveaway but hurry it ends June 22!

Hoover Carpet Cleaner Platinum Collection- One way to make your house feel clean and fresh is to have the carpets nice and clean, but with husbands, kids, and dogs running around all the time it can be hard to find the time and money for someone to come clean your carpets. So your nice cream carpet is now a nice beige carpet in spots, but still really nice under the couch. Enter the Hoover Carpet Cleaner. You can own your very own amazing carpet cleaner for all those spills, mud tracks, footprints, etc. that add up over the year on your carpet. 3 Kids and Us is giving away one Hoover Platinum Collection Carpet Cleaner. You can also check out other Hoover Platinum products by going to their site. Hurry the giveaway ends June 29!

Dyson DC25 All Floors Vacuum- A great lightweight vacuum with the Dyson ball that turns with just a turn of the wrist. It also is designed to trap microscopic allergens and remove dirt and pet hair from your carpets. It is certified asthma and allergy friendly and will leave your air and house nice and clean. Go over to Mommy Goggles and check out this awesome giveaway! Contest ends on July 11.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Real Men

What is a "real" man? In today's world there are so many conflicting descriptions of what makes a man a man that kids, teenagers, and even adults get confused and turn to the world, media, and peers to help them know how to enter into manhood.

Under the pretense of "manhood" boys are encouraged to drink, smoke, engage in immoral activities, use crude language and humor, watch violence on tv, pierce their bodies, steal, and do all sorts of vulgar things. Those who choose not to participate are called mamma's boys, sissys, pansys, or religious fanatics. We see enticing advertisements on tvs, magazines, and billboards promoting beer, smoking, and other vices. "Those who use cunning tactics to peddle their mares disregard the souls of young people and love only their money. They would have us believe that a person with a cigarette or alcoholic beverage in hand is a man, when in reality he is nothing more than a slave to a destructive substance. They would have us believe that a person who engages in illicit sex is a man, when in reality he is nothing more than an abuser of those who are "tender," and "chaste," and "delicate." (Jacob 2:7) They would have us believe that brute force, or crude behavior, uncontrolled temper, foul language, and dirty appearance make a man, when in reality these characteristics are animalistic at best and the opposite of manhood at worst." -Elder Carlos E. Asay

A real man is not what the world would have him be. He patterns his life after the most perfect man to ever live on the earth- even Jesus Christ. Our Savior, Jesus, was the man among men. He was pure, meek and humble and yet was more of a man then any man who has every lived. He yielded not to temptation, learned obedience by the things which he suffered, and he grew in love and grace. "Thus, he, the only sinless and perfect man who ever walked this earth, is qualified to state: "What manner of men ought ye to be? Verily I say unto you, even as I am." (3 Ne. 27:27.) " -Elder Asay

I want to pay tribute, on this Father's Day, to all the REAL men out there, who are working hard to become the best men they can be by becoming more Christ-like every day. To the father who loves his children more than anything and teaches them correct values in a firm and loving way, to the man who is willing to stand up for what he believes in even in the face of obscenities and ridicule, to the husband who takes care of his dying wife through years of heartache and pain without ever uttering a word of complaint, to the ultimate father- even our Father in Heaven- who loves each of us with the love of a perfect father.

So, even though the world may wish to turn our men from the truth about what it truly means to be a man, let us be thankful for those men in our lives who stand a little taller and are better than the world. Let us encourage all boys and men that we know to be true men, and let us be ever thankful for good fathers and men who make this world a better place.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Father's Day Giveaways

I know Father's Day is tomorrow, but there are still some great giveaways that you can enter to win Dad that awesome gift.

Nintendo Wii Games- For any Dad who loves the Wii here is a chance to win one of these games- Pikmin or Mario Power Tennis. These are both very fun games that can be played by themselves or with the family! Go to Mommy Mandy to enter this great giveaway. Ends on June 24.

HP MediaSmart Server LX195- This MediaSmart Server can help your hubby get control of all things digital. It can automatically back up and protect digital photos and videos, as well as centralize digital media and content so it's easy to share. You can back up multiple computers and store up to 168,000 photos, 147,000 songs or 405 hours of video2! I know Jeff would love this and I'm pretty sure your hubby would to. Go over to Mommy Goggles and sign up today or click on the link on my left side bar to get there. Giveaway ends on June 24.

8 Simple Rules Season 2 3-disc set- So you remember 8 Simple Rules for Dating my Teenage Daughter? I used to watch that show all the time and laugh until my sides hurt. What a great, clean, family tv show that is clever and so funny- especially if you remember being a teenager or have teenagers of your own. Dad's always happier when he's had a good laugh and here's how to give him just that. Go over to Mommy Goggles and sign up today or click on the link on my left side bar to get there. Giveaway ends on June 21.

Canopy Chair from SwimWays- I love having a camping chair to carry around for sporting events, camping, picnics, etc. The only problem is how awkward they usually are to carry and the fact that you need to bring a separate cover if you want to stay out of the sun. Here is a great chair that is lightweight, easy to carry, AND come with a canopy to keep the sun off you! How perfect for Dad to use such a chair while watching soccer games or while out with the kiddos. Go over to Mommy Goggles and sign up today or click on the link on my left side bar to get there. Giveaway ends on June 24.

Picture Keeper- A great little USB device that will keep your mind at ease when it comes to backing up your pictures. Such an easy product to use- just plug it in and it'll back up all your pictures- with no software to install! It's also so small that it can be stored anywhere and you can take it with you wherever you need. Great for any Dad who loves taking pictures or just likes cool electronics. Go over to Mommy Goggles and sign up today or click on the link on my left side bar to get there. Giveaway end on June 27.

Celebrate Chocolate Truffles- What Dad wouldn't want chocolate for Father's Day? This chocolate is not only amazingly good with interesting flavors, but it also works to suppress appetite and has a number of wonderful health benefits. What more could you ask for?! Go to Rockin' Mama and check out this great giveaway or click on the link on my left side bar. Giveaway ends on June 23.

Gold's Gym Cardio Workout for Wii- This is a great way for Dad to stay in shape and have fun! The routine gives you a complete body workout and provides a personal trainer to help keep you motivated with cardio, boxing, and strength training. You can use the Wii balance board but it is not required. Go over to Resourceful Mommy and check it out or click on the link on my left side bar. Giveaway ends on June 25.

Harry Potter books 5, 6, and 7 in paperback- That's right! Harry Potter 7 is coming out on paperback and to celebrate Wands and Worlds is giving away books 5, 6, and 7. Sometimes there is nothing better than a good book to snuggle up with and I'm sure Daddy could use the break from his busy schedule to take some time and enjoy the Harry Potter books again. Also just in time for the movie! Giveaway ends July 6.

Kodak Z1015 Digital Camera- This camera does it all and it does it with style! Long gone are the fuzzy pictures or cut-off pictures with your old digital camera. With this camera Dad can use the powerful 15x zoom lens to quickly get a great close-up shot or the 28 mm wide-angle lens for amazing landscapes or shots in tight quarters. Dad will love this easy to use camera and everyone will love the amazing pictures you get. Go to Mommy Mandy and check out this giveaway, but hurry it ends on June 21.

JVC Everio G Series Camcorder- Every Dad needs a good video camera for all those "Dad" moments that come and go so quickly, but we don't want to forget. This camcorder is lightweight with a nice small body- one of the world's smallest and lightest hard disk camcorders. You can take this thing anywhere and you can even take still images!!! Go to Mommy Mandy and check out this giveaway, but hurry it ends on June 21.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Applesauce Magic

Why the funny title? Well, when I was coming up with this blog the words Applesauce and Magic kept coming to me so I wrote them down. I thought it was a great way of summing up what I want to do here and a little about me. Let me explain...

I love applesauce. I love eating it, I love the smell of it, but mostly I love the fact that no matter where we are or what has happened applesauce will ALWAYS make my son happy! It will cure any cut, will stop any tears, will calm fears, and will keep him busy for at least 5 minutes as he inhales every last bit of it- then tries to lick up the rest. It is truly magical and it sure can make us both smile.

That's the kind of thing that I want to talk about- "magical" things in my life that make me (or my family) smile, be it winning a free camera to finding the perfect brand of toilet paper, life is full of "magical" moments and things that keep us happy and make our days just a little bit better.

What is this all about?

I've decided to start this new blog for very selfish reasons. I still have my personal blog where I'll post family pictures/videos/stories, but I needed another place for other random thoughts that come into my head.

Applesauce Magic will be a place where I can talk about whatever I want and not have to worry about who comes here and reads it. It will be a place for me to review books/movies/tv shows/games/etc. that I like and dislike. I will also express opinions on products I try, places I visit, new ideas about parenting that I try, parenting tips that work for me and don't work, recipes, housework, etc. I will share my opinion on everything and hope that in some way it will help those who read it- or I'll at least get suggestions that work for others on the same topic. (I'll still keep The Joy of Reading up and going, but will probably post the same book reviews on both sites).

This is also be a great place for me to list and blog about Internet giveaways and freebies. I have become a little obsessed lately trying to find good giveaways and freebies to sign up for and try out. I'll list every giveaway and freebie that I, personally, have signed up for and feel is worth my time. That way I can share all the great deals I get with anyone who cares without harassing people on my personal blog or through e-mails. I'd love any suggestions of places to find great giveaways or freebies and advice about what works and doesn't. Just to warn you- there will be A LOT of buttons, links, etc. put on the side bar because I could care less if they take up space on this blog- as long as I get them off my personal blog. Thanks and enjoy some applesauce!