Saturday, March 29, 2014

The Living Room and Dining Room

OK, I lied.  It really has been two weeks since I showed you our gorgeous floors in the dining room and living room, and I promised to post some pictures of how it looks with the furniture moved back in.  But seriously, how does time go by so fast

Better late than never, right?  Here's what it looks like now.  Looking from the doorway into the living room:

Looking around the corner into the dining room.  Instead of putting the china cabinet back along the wall, we put it in the corner, and the shelf with the cookbooks too.  It works really well and leaves more room to move around the table.  Now we just need to find some artwork for that wall.  The roses we had on the wall in our old house are a bit faded.  They were on the wall for a long time, and I just didn't notice until we pulled them out here.  So, we're looking, but that can wait.  Also, Jeffrey just hung the new curtains on Friday, and I haven't taken a picture yet. 

The library area.  I think the books can stay now.  I unpacked them, organized them on the shelves, and then had to move them when Jeffrey painted.  They got put back on the shelves, though not organized in any way, and then moved again when we did the floor.  Now, to find time to read them...

Looking toward the dining room.  The kitchen is through that doorway.

It does look a bit different than it did before:

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Friday, March 21, 2014

American Dream Builders Lowe's Gift Card Giveaway

 #DreamBuilders - What could you do around your house to make it the American Dream Home? If you've been reading my posts, you see we've been doing a bit around here, and, let me tell you, the cost of home improvement can really add up!  American Dream Builders, a new show premiering this Sunday on NBC, and Lowe's home improvement warehouse want to help someone create the home of their dreams by giving  them $100,000 in products and services from Lowe’s and a consultation with the winner of the show.  I know I'm entering!  Enter for your own chance to win your dream renovation at - one entry per day per person.   Starting March 23rd you will also be able to earn 5 bonus entries when you “Dream It Yourself”! Upload a photo or video and description of a home project you are working on and EARN 5 BONUS SWEEPSTAKES ENTRIES.  I've got a picture or two to share, how about you?

(Learn how you can enter to win a $50 Lowe's gift card at the end of this post)

About the show:  
Hosted by famed interior designer and best-selling author, Nate Berkus, AMERICAN DREAM BUILDERS follows the nation’s top 12 designers and home builders as they compete to be crowned the Ultimate Dream Builder and take home a $250,000 cash prize. It’s the home competition that will change everything!

Get an extended look at American Dream Builders, the new makeover competition show hosted by Nate Berkus and premiering March 23 on NBC, and follow the show on Facebook and Twitter for a chance to win more prizes from American Dream Builders and Lowe’s!

For even more fun, you'll be able to live tweet along with the judges and Nate Berkus during the show.  Nate will be live tweeting all season long

One reader will receive a $50 gift card from Lowe's (not the $100,000 big prize; you'll have to enter that HERE)  Entering is simple.  Just leave me a comment telling me what home improvement project(s) you'd do if you won the big prize.
Additional entries: (once per day on each site)

  • tweet about this giveaway with a link to this post and the hashtag #DreamBuilders
  • Share on Facebook and/or Google+
Giveaway is open to U.S. residents, and all entries must be received by 11:59pm Eastern on March 31, 2014.  Good luck!

Each household is only eligible to win One (1) $50 Lowe's Gift Card via blog reviews and giveaways. Only one winner per mailing address per giveaway. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you will not be eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.
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Saturday, March 15, 2014

Look What We Did!

I know, it has taken me forever (2 weeks) to show you the rest of the updates we've made to the house.  You've been hanging on the edges of your seats, right?  OK, maybe not, but you do want to see, don't you?

After the dining room and living room were painted, we took out the carpeting,

and started putting down new wood flooring.

 We started in the dining room and then, when that was done, we moved the furniture from the living room into the dining room, and we did the living room.  We had never done anything like this before, so it was an adventure and really quite fun.  It's kinda like putting together a puzzle, and kind of addictive as you start to see things coming together.  Not quite so much fun spending a couple hours one afternoon taking up about 19 rows and putting them back down again because I noticed an extra-wide gap right there in the walkway between the dining room and the living room.  (But I had to get it done so we could continue that evening when Jeffrey got home from work.)

Now, we have this gorgeous hardwood floor in there.  And, yes, I still go in there - often - and say, "Look what we did!"   Or just look at it and enjoy it.

Pictures of all the furniture moved back into place coming next!  (I promise not to wait two weeks.  Really)

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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Free Shopping Planner and Coupons for New Moms

Sign up to get a free shopping planner filled with deals and coupons.  The planner includes spaces for menu planning and shopping lists as well as tips for new moms and easy recipes, too.  It also includes coupons for things new moms need, from breastfeeding support products to organic baby wash.  There are in-store manufacturer's coupons and coupon codes for online shopping, and it all comes in a convenient booklet you can tuck into your purse or diaper bag.

The best part is - it's FREE!  And, the more moms who sign up, the more coupons and deals they'll be able to offer.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Heart Healthy Recipes and Savings from Campbell Soup

This post is sponsored by Campbell Soup Company

The busier we all get the harder it becomes to eat right and keep our families healthy.  It's just easier to grab a fast food dinner while on the run or fix pre-packaged convenience foods.  That's OK once in a while, but studies have shown that eating home-cooked meals at least five days out of the week can have a big impact on your health.

Of course, that's not all there is to it.  I cook most of our meals, but I don't always think about whether a recipe is heart healthy, low in saturated fat or cholesterol, or any of the other health-related concerns I should probably be thinking about.  Usually I just fix whatever sounds good to me.  Thankfully I do like healthy food, and I'm not a big fan of fried foods or sweets, so we probably eat healthier than a lot of people.  There's always room for improvement, though, and I really want to feed my husband healthy meals because that is one thing I can do for him and his health.  I can't exercise for him - though now that we're into Daylight Saving Time, we have some extra daylight in the evenings so maybe I can get him back to walking - but I can make sure he eats right, at least most of the time.

Campbell’s Soup realizes that keeping our families healthy can be a challenge for all of us, so they've put together some heart-healthy tips and “American Heart Association Certified Recipes” as well as great coupons and special offers at

Here are some of those hearth healthy recipes that caught my eye:

Slow-Cooked Chicken & Butternut Squash
(easy and healthy, don't you just love the slow cooker?)

Creamy Chicken & Vegetables over Spaghetti Squash
(I love spaghetti squash!)

Creamy Turkey & Vegetable Lasagna
(looks like comfort food to me!)

Pizza Primavera with Cauliflower Crust  (I have been wanting to try a cauliflower crust and look at those veggies!)

Pork Medallions with Spinach & Barley  (I'd use turkey since I don't eat pork, but I'm kind of obsessed with spinach and barley right now)
Don't those look yummy?  Just click on the picture to get any of the recipes.  There are quite a few more recipes available so be sure to check all of them out, and visit the Campbell's Kitchen Facebook page for even more.  Also be sure to grab some Campbell's money-saving coupons before you head to the store so you can fix dinner for less.
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Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Win a One Year Subscription to - Giveaway!

What is

If your kids are awake, they’re probably on a smartphone, in front of a smart tv, downloading apps, or posting to social networks - and most likely you have no idea what they’re doing.
  • 80% of parents have no idea how to monitor their kid’s online activities 
  • 74% of parents say they do not have the time or energy to keep up with their children online
  • 62% of parents don't think their teens can get into serious trouble online
If any of those describe you, then might be just what you need to help keep your kids safe.  Set to launch in June 2014, will be a subscription-based site for parents that will include hundreds of videos, reviews, and  how-tos that are current, cutting-edge, and trending, keeping subscribers ahead of the tech curve  - and ahead of their own kids, or at least right along with their kids in understanding technology and what's going on online.  It will be the largest site on the net helping parents understand tech, what's safe, what’s not, and what's age-appropriate.  You'll get articles, news, and information on what’s new in the world of tech and how it affects your family.  There will be ratings, rankings on which platforms are safe for kids, and age ranges so you know if a site is safe for your children.

You'll get articles, videos, reviews, tips, tools and expert advice on EVERYTHING like…
  • Popular Apps
  • Social Network Sites
  • Major Websites
  • Top Devices ... and more.
Learn more about and the people behind it:


My kids are all grown up, but I certainly could have used something like this, even though I like to believe that I'm more tech savvy than some other parents I know.  Currently is in pre-launch, raising funds through indiegogo and offering some really good perks for your contributions.  A regular one-year subscription will be $49, but you can contribute through indiegogo right now, and get that same membership for only $29.  Not only that, but you will have access to before the general public.  There are also some other options you'll want to check out, including a 2 years for the price of 1 subscription and a lifetime subscription.  Visit the fundraising page to get started.

Now for the Giveaway:  One reader will receive a one-year subscription to ($49 value)
To enter:  Leave a comment telling me what you think will be the best part about or something you're looking forward to learning more about through the site.
Additional entries: Tweet about this giveaway, share on Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, or other social media; be sure to include a link back to this post and the hashtag #iparenttv (once per day per social media site)  Be sure to leave a comment for each tweet or share.

Giveaway is open to U.S. residents, and all entries must be received by 11:59pm Eastern time on Friday March 14, 2014.  Good luck!

Each household is only eligible to win One (1) Subscription to via blog reviews and giveaways. Only one entrant per mailing address per giveaway. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you will not be eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.
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