Building Our Story

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Enter this #giveaway and WIN $100 to Amazon

amazonblast 

Makobi Scribe is bringing you this Amazon Pinterest blast where one lucky reader will win a $100 Amazon gift card. The giveaway is open to everyone and provided by Makobi Scribe. Good Luck! If you are a blogger, you can sign up for this blast here.



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Monday, September 22, 2014

Teaching Abundance and Gratitude to Our Children

Wednesday’s are Jude’s library days and I am always excited to see what book caught his eye for the week.  Last Wednesday when he showed me the book he decided to check out, I laughed at first but when we started reading it I immediately thought how SPOT on this book really was.  Honestly, the cover made me think he had picked a book that was way over his head but guess what?  He got it!  And I love that he GETS it. 

The book he brought home was this:

Teaching Abundance and Gratitude to Our Children.   It's Not What You've Got! Lessons for Kids on Money and Abundance by Wayne W. Dyer.


It looks a bit old school but the message is there.

Basic overview of the book:
Inspiring and motivating book in rhyming verses, teaching children that money isn't everything and the best things in life are free and there's Abundance in life to be, do or have anything you want.  Creative self-help book.  It's great to simplify such big concepts for children in this way .

Every day I see and hear about young kids that truly get everything they Need and Want.  The result is not pretty.  I do not want my children growing up with the expectations that they too get all of those “things” just because they want them. 

The direct message of this book is perfect – in fact I needed to read this phrase even more than Jude I think. 

Money does not define who you are; it doesn't matter what others have, and abundance comes in many forms.
  

So many times I sit back and see our house full of things, toys, food, fun, ect. but then when Jude hears what a family member or friend is getting I wonder, “are we doing enough?”

In all honesty, I know we are doing enough, both of our children are provided with so much, they are blessed – as are we.  So here I sat with my 4 year old, reading this book learning  and teaching him about abundance and the question came from his mouth that I will never forget.

“Will my tooth fairy give me toys and lots money and candy too?” 

My dearest Jude – no – your tooth fairy will drop off a dollar and a hug.  Why has our world come to this?  We have fairies for everything and not just for little trinkets or change for the piggy bank but cash money and large toys! 

Is this competition for the kids or for the parents?

Where do we draw a line?

How do we deal with these shows of abundance when our kids?

And now the biggest question of all has taken place at our dinner table – “Will we go to Disneyland soon?”  Oh man…maybe one day but for now little Jude we are trying to go see Grandma and Grandpa for Thanksgiving and that is going to be a flight that empties our vacation fund.  Oy! 

I highly recommend this book for the preschool age and beyond.  Read it with an open mind and learn with your child.  You will be reminded about your blessings that do not cost money or come in a THING form.  


In a world full of Abundance how do you keep your children grounded and focused on the real abundance in life? 

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A+ Values Brings Us Savings

Disclosure:  This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CollectiveBias #APlusValues



A Plus Values, A+ Values, Henkel Promotion, Henkel Coupons, Dial Coupons, Purex Coupons, Grocery Coupons, Back to School Savings, Back to College Savings

Life is full of messes, food mess, pet mess, sports mess, kid mess, just MESS!  This means we go through a lot of household products that are meant for cleaning and freshness.  This also means I am always looking for A Plus Values that help me feel good about the money we spend on quality products!  Bottom line is that we will be spending money on these items whether we like it or not but recently I have found a way to not only keep our cabinets ready for those messes but at a great deal. 



Lately, you have been hearing me talk about our recent addition of Fall sports, don't get me wrong, I love it but I do not like the extra laundry and stinkiness that comes with it.  Yes, I said stinkiness.  Is that even a word?  Well it is in our house.  

I have always visioned myself as a #boymom dealing with grass stains, sticky socks and mountains of laundry from sporting events, well it has become pretty obvious that even as a #girlmom I will be finding these issues.   This weekend Jude came home with his first grass stain on his baseball pants - I have to admit it makes him look pretty cool!  ha!  He thinks so too!  Silly guy.  

A Plus Values, A+ Values, Henkel Promotion, Henkel Coupons, Dial Coupons, Purex Coupons, Grocery Coupons, Back to School Savings, Back to College Savings

These life messes come with life bills - so many bills, so I have found a way to keep our necessities stocked but find savings as well.  The Henkel A+ Values promotion is something that I have been started sharing with my friends and family.  Henkel products such as Purex, Dial, Soft Scrub and Right Guard are included in this promotion and can be taken advantage of in just minutes.  

A Plus Values, A+ Values, Henkel Promotion, Henkel Coupons, Dial Coupons, Purex Coupons, Grocery Coupons, Back to School Savings, Back to College Savings

After I get home from my Life Mess shopping trip I just open up the Henkel Promotion website from my phone and scan my store receipt and wait for my coupon!  Seriously, it is that easy to get $10 back in promotional coupons for your next stock up shopping trip.  If you are a mom like me, you know that the $10 will be used!!

A Plus Values, A+ Values, Henkel Promotion, Henkel Coupons, Dial Coupons, Purex Coupons, Grocery Coupons, Back to School Savings, Back to College Savings

Now is the perfect opportunity to restock your cabinets with great products for less! Simply spend $20 or more on Henkel products you can get $10 back.
Learn more by clicking the link below.


A Plus Values 
Get $10 Back in Coupon Savings*  


*Coupon savings delivered electronically via opt-in e-mail. While supplies last. $20 purchase requirement based on advertised retail price, before coupons.
A Plus Values, A+ Values, Henkel Promotion, Henkel Coupons, Dial Coupons, Purex Coupons, Grocery Coupons, Back to School Savings, Back to College Savings

I found so many great Henkel Products at my favorite Target to keep our cabinets ready for all of our adventures plus in doing this restocking visit, I saved us money! 


What items do you make sure your cabinets are stocked full of? 

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Saturday, September 20, 2014

Jif To Go® Dippers #GetGoing Photo Contest #MC #Sponsored

Disclosure: I participated in an Influencer Activation Program on behalf of Influence-Central for Jif To Go Dippers. I received a sample to facilitate my review and a thank you item for participating.



Jif To Go Dippers #GetGoing Photo Contest

The phrase #GetGoing is pretty much said in our home every hour.  Sometimes I feel like we are always on the go!  Our life recently got a lot busier when both kiddos started their fall sports.  Every weekend we are taking Jude to T-ball and Teagan to Tumbling and ending our weekend with swim lessons!  Exhausted!  But I love it.  Now when we have busy days planned for the weekend along with the scheduled sports we are not at home often, which means we are finding ways to keep our energy up and the crappy kiddos away!  

Enter Jif To Go®  Dippers!  These are the perfect on the go snack for all of us!  It is no surprise, we are all Peanut Butter lovers!  Yum!!  Protein Packed Snacks that keep us going even when the only time we are "resting" is in the car ride to the next scheduled weekend activity!  Life is full of #GetGoing Moments in our family so finding a perfect To Go snacks the weekend adventures that much easier on mom!  

The Jif® brand’s first all-in-one portable snack is available in two varieties: Creamy Peanut Butter with Pretzels and Chocolate Silk Peanut Butter & Pretzels. My favorite is the Chocolate Silk Peanut Butter and Pretzels and everyone else loves the Creamy Peanut Butter classic with Pretzels!  Yum!  These come in handy, well proportioned containers that makes it easy for the crazy toddlers to have a energy packed snack in the car.  

Jif To Go Dippers #GetGoing Photo Contest

While you are on your adventures with your family and friends I know that you have your camera - who doesn't carry their phone around to get that PERFECT selfie or silly family photo?  Well now you can put that photo to good use!  Jif To Go®  Dippers wants to see how you #GetGoing!  

From August 20 through October 1, 2014, Jif To Go® is celebrating life on-the-go by asking fans to share a picture of how they get going in the #GetGoing photo promotion. Fans can enter each week for a chance to win $1,000 to use for their next adventure. 

How to enter:
Share your #GetGoing photo on your Instagram, Twitter or Facebook and tag your photo with @JifBrand and the hashtag #GetGoing in the caption of the photo to receive one entry into the random drawing for that week! SO EASY!  Just think about all of the photos you upload every weekend!  I know you have some of your fun family adventures!  

Connect with Jif now -

The #GetGoing photo promotion is open to legal residents of the 50 United States and D.C., 18 years of age and older. Void where prohibited. No purchase necessary. See Official Rules for complete details.

I have plenty of photos to get into this competition!  If we won the $1000.00 we would be heading to Arizona for Thanksgiving to visit Jeremy's parents!  Finger crossed!  


If you won the $1,000 in the competition, where would you go?


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Friday, September 19, 2014

Medifast Week 8 - A NSV!

Disclosure: I receive free product in order to evaluate and comment on my experiences on the Medifast Program. Medifast products and the Medifast Program are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or illness. Any medical improvements noted while on the program are related to weight loss in general, and not to Medifast products or programs.



Medifast Update:


Wow, first I must apologize.  I have failed you for the last month.  No updates.  Not good.  I know that one of the reasons why I haven't updated is because I wasn't fully on plan, call it embarrassed or let down.  But whatever it is, I am back.  Frankly, I need all of you and my blog to keep my on track and accountable.  So here I am, crawling back to you with my tail between my legs.  

Wondering where I have been?  There is this thing called life, it got me and held on.  I was making some big changes in my life and still am trying (changes that I cannot post here).  Those changes had my emotions going crazy and on top of that my BFF who I consider my sister had a major trauma in her life and honestly, I took it on as my own trauma.  When she hurts, I hurt.  So there it is.  Life came in and played with my emotions and my terrible eating habits.   

A couple weeks ago I headed out to Arkansas to visit my friend and have a nice girls weekend, that in itself was healing for both of us.  I have been looking back at some pictures of my visit and while most of our time together was spent in yoga pants I did see this picture and guess what?  I have lost weight.  Oh and Lauren and I look so HOT!  LOL!  Seriously, when I saw this picture I stopped being hard on myself and praised myself for enjoying myself with my friend but also making better choices.  It does pay off. 


Non-Scale Victory:

While the picture above is a NSV, so is this.  Before I left for Arkansas I placed an order for some new work pants from my favorite store, Maurices.  For once it wasn't for the size up, instead I bought a smaller size!!  I was getting sick of walking into work with my pants sagging!  What a great feeling!!  So while I feel like I let the Medifast blogging program down, I want you all to know that I am taking these NSV and running with them!  Motivation!!  

So while I haven't been on program, I am proud to say that I haven't gained any of my 15 pound back!  YES!!  While I am not completely happy with my total loss in 2 months, I am staying positive and moving forward.  


Weight Loss:

Month 1 (-9, -2, -1, -2)
Month 2 (-1, 0, 0, 0)
Month 3 (

Total Weight Lost = 15 pounds


GOALS:

Goal 1 - To make Medifast a new habit (21 days!)  Started the program on  7/20/2014 - stay on plan until 8/10/2014!!  COMPLETED!!

Goal 2 - 20 pounds gone

Goal 3 - 30 pounds gone

Goal 4 - 50 pounds gone

Goal 5 -60 pounds gone



Start a new journey and save some money while doing it!



Click here to place your order!  

Medifast has some deals for you! If you use my code, OURSTORY15, you can receive $15 off an order of $150 or more. Or, use code OURSTORY28 to receive 28 free meals (a $67 value!) with your purchase of $250+.


Limit one per customer. The OURSTORY28 code is limited to new customers only and not valid with prior purchases, Medifast Advantage, or any other promotions or discounts.


Both codes expire on 12/31/2014. See website for complete details on program and discounts. Consult your physician before beginning a weight-loss program.




Have you found comfort in any Non Scale Victories?  

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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

T-Ball and Tumbling - Our Life.

This weekend started our Fall Sports for Teagan and Jude which means for the first time we are having to split up the parenting duties to get the kids to their sports on Saturday mornings!  Craziness begins!!!  

Teagan started Tumbling and she is loving it.  I took her to her first class and we had a blast doing all of the activities and she looks absolutely adorable in her little pink leotard.  I will say this, I know that I will get in a nice work out on Saturday mornings now!  


While we were at tumbling Jude and Jeremy were enjoying the perfect fall weather for Jude's very first T-Ball practice and game.  Jude was so excited to head out to the ball field with his new baseball pants, glove and ball - oh and his cup!  Yes a cup, required to play, he was pretty confused when we told him that it wasn't for drinking.  Oh the brain of a 4 year old.  

His first day was mostly a practice but from now on he will have a 30 minute practice and a 30 minute game every Saturday morning.  He got to run bases, play catch and bat this Saturday, he said his favorite part was running bases!  So cute!  


Thankfully these are both held at our local rec center so I will be able to catch some of Jude's games after Teagan and I are done with tumbling.  What a busy Saturday morning we have now but I love it!!  Oh and we are now doing Swim Lessons for both kids on Sunday evenings too!  Hey, we have no time to be bored right???


Did your kids start any fall sports this weekend??


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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

New England Cornbread #Recipe

Disclosure:  I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Monk Fruit In The Raw. I received product samples to facilitate my post as well as a promotional item to thank me for my participation.

Recently, we had a potluck to attend and I was trying to figure out a different dish to take instead of the tradition super sweet desserts.  As a family we have been trying to cut out high sugar treats and desserts but that isn't easy, so I was really excited to try a different zero-calorie sweetener called Monk Fruit In The Raw.  

Monk Fruit In The Raw is a wholesome, zero-calorie sweetener that is made with real fruit and has a simple, sweet taste that can be used in any recipe that calls for sugar.  This is perfect for our family.  We are trying to cut added sugars but we do not want to sacrifice any taste!! And let's be real, I love to bake, especially this time of the year.  

I started looking for some wholesome yummy treats for our Potluck and I decided to try my growing baking skills by making some New England Cornbread using the Monk Fruit In The Raw sweetener instead of sugar.  I have to say, it was a HIT and I guarantee my family will be asking for me to whip this recipe up again very soon.  

New England Cornbread #Recipe.  Monk Fruit In The Raw.  Zero Calorie Sweetener.  Cornbread recipe.  Easy cornbread recipe.


New England Cornbread Recipe 

Free Printable Recipe Here. 


Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 cup yellow stone-ground cornmeal
1/4 cup Monk Fruit In The Raw™
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup 1% milk, at room temperature
2 large eggs
3 tablespoons melted unsalted butter


New England Cornbread #Recipe.  Monk Fruit In The Raw.  Zero Calorie Sweetener.  Cornbread recipe.  Easy cornbread recipe.

Directions:
1.  Preheat the oven to 425° F. Coat a 9-inch x 9-inch baking pan with cooking spray and set aside.

2.  In a large bowl, whisk the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder and salt together to combine them. 

3.  In a large measuring cup, whisk the milk, eggs, and butter together. 

4.  Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ones and mix with a wooden spoon just enough to combine them; leaving a few lumps is fine. 

New England Cornbread #Recipe.  Monk Fruit In The Raw.  Zero Calorie Sweetener.  Cornbread recipe.  Easy cornbread recipe.

5.  Spread the batter evenly in the prepared baking pan. Bake the cornbread in the center of the oven for 25-30 minutes, until the top is golden and the edges lightly browned. 

6.  Cool the cornbread in the pan on a wire rack for 20 minutes.  Serve warm!  Enjoy!!

New England Cornbread #Recipe.  Monk Fruit In The Raw.  Zero Calorie Sweetener.  Cornbread recipe.  Easy cornbread recipe.

I have been very surprised with the Monk Fruit In The Raw products and have found myself using the very convenient individual packets for my morning tea and coffee.  The sweetener tastes like sugar!  There isn't a chemical taste at all, which makes me very comfortable with baking and cooking with this sweetener for my kids.  Monk Fruit In The Raw comes in the packets and also a Bakers Bag that you can use instead of sugar in any of your favorite recipes.  Simply measure cup for cup and you are set!  For some culinary tips and inspiration make sure you head on over to the Monk Fruit In The Raw website and you will be in the kitchen in no time.  

Did you know that September is Childhood obesity month?  While I have dealt with my weight for my entire life I truly want my children to have a different start.  Finding products like Monk Fruit In The Raw helps me keep my children on track but still enjoying those treats.  Finding ways to cut the extra sugar but still enjoy the good stuff and for me the baking itself makes this a great sweetener to have in our kitchen.  

To stay connected check out Monk Fruit In The Raw Facebook page and Twitter account for more tips, tricks and recipes to help reduce sugar in your everyday life!


What family favorites could you replace sugar with Monk Fruit In The Raw with?


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