Thursday, February 24, 2011

Hop Along Friday

Welcome to the 40th edition of Hop Along Friday, hosted by My New Life As Mom, Chubby Cheeks Thinks, This Adventure Our Life, Belly Charms and Living On Love & Cents!

Photo Challenege - Day 2 - You & Your Bestie

My husband and I have known each other since December 2002 and have been married since July 2005. We are partners in crime and thankfully we balance each other out.

This photo was taken in the spring of 2009 in Disney Land. I was 3 months pregnant with my little man, at the time.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Photo Challenge - Day 1 - Self Portrait & 10 Fun Facts.

Please excuse the poor quality of the photo.

1. I was born Stephanie Nicole.
2. I was born on Monday, January 12th at 7:31pm.
3. I am lactose intolerant and have IBS.
4. I have been pregnant with two babies but only gave birth to one.
5. I deal with OCD on a daily basis.
6. If I had my way, I would have chosen a different name for my son.
7. I wear a size 6 shoe.
8. I have a short fuse.
9. I am not a movie fan.
10. My favorite past time is eating out with my friends or family.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Free Belly Bag

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of CryoCell International. All opinions are 100% mine.

With Cryo-Cell International, you can learn all the necessary information regarding cord-blood banking and in the process, win a free belly bag. All you have to do is request an informational packet and consult with an advisor. Simple as that. You're not required to sign up, nor are you under any further obligation.

Cord Blood banking has certainly gained popularity in recent years and is a great resource to have if your child (or their sibling) gets diagnosed with certain diseases. If you would like to learn more about Cord Blood Banking, please visit Cryo-Cell at the following addresses:

Since I do plan to have more children, this is definitely something that I am interested in learning more about.

Have you researched this or have you banked your babies cord blood? What do you think about it?

Visit Sponsor's Site

Thursday, February 17, 2011

$25 gift certificate to Little Bitty Creations PLUS Review Opportunity!!

Would you like to enter to win a $25 gift certificate to Little Bitty Creations? Simply check out their facebook page, located here, then suggest them to your friends. Once you're finished, make sure you let them know that you did so they can enter you into the giveaway.

Little Bitty Creations is also looking for bloggers to review their products! If you would be interested in doing so, please email snmjsm{at} to fill out the short survery and apply to be a reviewer.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Guest Post by Wendy Lau

The Health Benefits of Having Pets

Growing up I went through many pets: turtle, goldfish, guinea pig, iguana, ferret and cat. The care and affection involved with having a pet is a great learning experience as a child, but there are so many more benefits to having a pet. Those are health benefits, both physical and emotional.
Today my home includes a 5-year old tabby (cat) that we've had since he was 3-weeks old. Since we've had him I can speak of so many ways he has impacted me and my family's life. Below I list 5 particular health benefits of having a pet. I can imagine many of you can experience these health benefits as well by opening your home to a pet.

5 Health Benefits of Having Pets

  1. Keeps You Active: Most pets prefer a schedule. They may be walked a certain time of day. They may be fed a certain time of day. They may be played with several times a day. All these different activities can make you take a much-needed break from what you are doing or help get you out of bed if you haven't already. Because you care for your pet, you know that if you don't walk him, feed him, and/or play with him, he is all alone with hunger lingering and sadness filling the air with whimpers, howling, meows, and/or desperate stares. Pets help you maintain a routine schedule and keep you up on your feet throughout the day.
  2. Good for the Heart: A number of studies have shown that having a pet can help reduce stress, lowering the chances of a heart attack and other cardiac conditions. In one 20-year study, "people who never owned a cat were 40% more likely to die of a heart attack than those who had," according to Dr. Brunilda Nazario, a health expert for Women's Health magazine. Petting an animal and interacting with them may also help you produce a more positive outlook on life as well as makes you feel more calm and relaxed.
  3. Builds Stronger Immunity: Children growing up around a dog or cat build a stronger immune system and are less likely to develop allergies and asthma. Infants have also been shown to be less likely to develop eczema, a common allergy skin condition that can result in red patches and itchiness, according to Dr. James E. Gern, a pediatrician at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, who studied and analyzed allergic reaction, immunity changes, and reactions to bacteria in infants immediately after birth and one year later.
    • Advances Child Development and Behavior: Children can develop strong bonds with pets. I know with my baby, he loves to talk to our cat and one of his first words was "meow." Pets may offer unconditional love and companionship leading one to feel comfort and trust in them. In fact, therapists and researchers have reported that children with autism sometimes interact better with pets, which may help build interactions with people.
    • Improves Survival Rate: Studies show pets can improve one's survival rate by improving both mental and medical conditions. In one particular study, "dog owners had a significantly better survival rate one year after a heart attack," according to Dr. Nazario. Pets have also lessened the risk of other cardiac diseases. There are many other studies that support this point, including one that showed male pet owners had lower triglyceride and cholesterol levels than nonpet owner, which directly impacts one's health.
    While pets can provide us with many health benefits, it's important that we keep our pets healthy too. There are a number of resources available with information to help you help your pet stay happy, safe and healthy. Visit Woof, Meow, Tweet: Your Guide to Pet Health.

    This post was written by Wendy Lau a stay-at-home mom and freelance writer based in New York City who also writes for distance learning

    Guest Post by Pierce Jameson

    5 Great Math Books for Kids

    This post was written by Pierce Jameson who also writes on the topic of online court reporting schools for

    Children grow up learning from play. Whether it's words or numbers, if we make it fun, learning becomes fun.

    Learning numbers and math is all part of growing up and understanding the world around us. Children may learn numbers by counting their fingers, their toes, their siblings, their food, the birds flying in the sky and so much more. Numbers help children learn about big and small, tall and short, more and less, the time, the year, the date and degrees.
    Below we compiled 5 great math books for children of various ages. Whether you're looking for a book for the preschooler or junior high school child in your life, we have it highlighted here.

    Great Math Books for Kids

    • The Clock Struck One: A Time-telling Tale (Math Is Fun!)Published: 2009
      Ages: 4-8
      This 32-page picture book follows a cat and a mouse throughout the day. At different strikes of the hour the cat and mouse are on to different activities. While learning of their activities at different points in the day, children also have an opportunity to learn about the different objects available to tell time, from cuckoo clocks to pocket watches.

    • Follow-the-Directions: Solve & Draw Math (3-5): Fun Reproducible Activities That Challenge Students to Solve Problems and Follow Directions to Reveal a Mystery PicturePublished: 2009
      Ages: 7-10 (Grades 3-5)
      Mathematical topics covered include addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, fractions and decimals, geometry, measurement, and more. Each correctly completed activity reveals a mystery picture . This book is not only educational but also engaging and fun.

    • Can I Have Some Money?: Max Gets It!
      Published: 2010
      Ages: Elementary Grade Level
      While learning math is important, learning how to apply math in life is just as important. This book tells a story of a 10-year old boy named Max. Max is looking to buy a video game for himself. We learn about his journey to understanding earning, spending and budgeting his allowance. Eventually he buys a video game for himself with his earned allowance and we see how he becomes financially responsible.
    • One Minute Mysteries: 65 Short Mysteries You Solve with Math!Published: 2010
      Ages: 9-12
      This 160-page paperback is filled with mysteries both kids and parents can enjoy solving using mathethical skills. It's not only entertaining, but also educational. Each mystery can even be a race between you and your child to see who can solve the problem first. The authors have written other books such as One Minute Mysteries: 65 Short Mysteries You Solve With Science!
    Make learning math fun for children through different activities, puzzles and interesting stories. Each of the books highlighted above is a great resource to helping children learn more about math and apply what they learn to real life situations.

    If you would like to write a guest that will be published on My new life as... MOM! Please email Stephanie for details at: stephanie[at]mynewlifeasmom[dot]com

    Thursday, February 10, 2011

    Hop Along Friday

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    Welcome to the 39th edition of Hop Along Friday, hosted by My New Life As Mom, Chubby Cheeks Thinks, This Adventure Our  Life,    Belly Charms and Living On Love & Cents!

    Please              feel free to follow through and link up to facebook and     twitter        accounts   as well
               once    you get on someone's page, but     please  only     link              your blog      up, here. As always, we      continue     to       invite   you      and    your      friends  to  link up every    Friday    and             join   us for a        wonderful
    blog  hopping adventure! We're all about making     friends and having fun so  come join us!

    You         can   still be rewarded for participating! Each week we will use  to  pick a
    "featured                 blog" of the week from the   previous        weeks link     ups!          Want      your blog featured? Then you have   to link    up!             Here's    how  you     can   join in on     the fun;
    • Link up to your blog using our inlinkz link list, below.
    • Follow the host/hostesses located in the first 5 slots.
    • Follow any other blogs that you feel appropriate! :)
    • If you get a new follower, please feel free to reciprocate the love!
    This is a new list every Friday, so please remember to come back   and   link up!

    We                          understand that not everyone has time to follow     and        comment    on           every  Hop    Along Friday     Participant,   just  do     what you    can  and   are        willing      to       do.  We   will  do   the   same!  Take   your  time   and go      at     your   own    pace.  FYI,          however,  if you   follow    me    and  leave a        comment,        guaranteed,  I will        follow      you  back!

    The link list is only open to add new blogs on Fridays but will be     visible all week long.

    This weeks featured blog is #16 from last week!

    Tuesday, February 08, 2011

    Hilton Romance Package

    This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Hiltons of Branson. All opinions are 100% mine.

    This Valentine's Day, why not create that once in a lifetime romantic experience with your partner? The Hilton Promenade at Branson Landing and Hilton Branson Convention Center Hotel are helping to make your special occasion even better. During your stay, you will be sure to enjoy;

    *Early check-in & pre-registration upon request
    *In-room sparkling wine (where permitted by law) or cider upon arrival
    *Access to hotel health club, pool and whirlpool spa (where available)
    *Full American breakfast for two in their room (where available) or in the hotel's designated restaurant. At airport locations, guests can exchange their breakfast for a lunch or dinner discount
    *On stays beyond one night, buy one entrée and get a second one of equal or lesser value at no additional cost. (Choose from either lunch or dinner in designated restaurant)
    *Late check-out available upon request

    If I was fortunate enough to enjoy the Romance package provided by Hilton Promenade at Branson Landing and Hilton Branson Convention Center Hotel. I would take my husband, of course. I would treat it as our honeymoon(away) that we should have taken and all that we have accomplished in those last 6 years.

    My favorite part of the Romance package would be the one on one time with my husband. To rekindle that flame and to build upon our future. To take the time to enjoy each other. To enjoy the moment and our life together. It would be wonderful.

    The 5 course meal at Level 2 Steakhouse is also quite intriguing! I would love the main course, aside from the foie gras. I've never had it and personally, duck or goose liver is very unappealing. Other than that it sounds divine! I also love the idea of having lemon sorbet and pomegranate infused champagne in between the appetizer and the entre.  It would add a little palate cleansing, lite-ness and freshness to the meal.

    So my question to you, is;

    If you could enjoy (or are going to enjoy) the romance package, who would you take and what would you look forward to?

    Visit Sponsor's Site

    Saturday, February 05, 2011

    Photographer Deals!!!

    This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of PhotoFlashDrive by Pexagon Technology. All opinions are 100% mine.

    photography flash drives is a great little company that carries flash drives for photographers from amateurs to professionals. They proudly offer 25% OFF, every single day, for photographers, on their personalized USB flash drives, portable hard drives and other great custom products. simply has something for everyone. They have so many products to choose from it's unbelievable, and many, if not all, are completely customizable. Many of these products would be great for gifts, as well! Simply upload your friends or family members name and information and give them a gift that they would love. Upload the pictures onto the flash drive and they'll always have something to look back on and cherish. Who wouldn't want that? is a division of Pexagon Technology and photographers across the country are using Pexagon personalized photography flash drives and hard drives because they're proud that they're MADE IN THE USA. What do I mean 'personalized'? You can engrave a logo on the front and up to 2 lines of text on the back. You can load dozens, hundreds or even thousands of high-resolution images onto a device that has been branded with your studio logo, your name or personalized for your customer.

    You can choose from multiple styles, products and colors to make each and every one you do truly original. Your customers will remember you and get your name out there! Stylish, professional packaging solutions are also available!

    Visit Sponsor's Site

    Thursday, February 03, 2011

    Hop Along Friday

    Welcome to the 39th edition of Hop Along Friday, hosted by My New Life As Mom, Chubby Cheeks Thinks, This Adventure Our Life, Belly Charms and Living On Love & Cents!

    Please feel free to follow through and link up to facebook and twitter accounts as well
    once you get on someone's page, but please only link your blog up, here. As always, we continue to invite you and your friends to link up every Friday and join us for a wonderful
    blog hopping adventure! We're all about making friends and having fun so come join us!

    You can still be rewarded for participating! Each week we will use to pick a
    "featured blog" of the week from the previous weeks link ups! Want your blog featured? Then you have to link up! Here's how you can join in on the fun;
    • Link up to your blog using our inlinkz link list, below.
    • Follow the host/hostesses located in the first 5 slots.
    • Follow any other blogs that you feel appropriate! :)
    • If you get a new follower, please feel free to reciprocate the love!
    This is a new list every Friday, so please remember to come back and link up!

    We understand that not everyone has time to follow and comment on every Hop Along Friday Participant, just do what you can and are willing to do. We will do the same! Take your time and go at your own pace. FYI, however, if you follow me and leave a comment, guaranteed, I will follow you back!

    The link list is only open to add new blogs on Fridays but will be visible all week long.

    This weeks featured blog is #82 from last week!

    Tuesday, February 01, 2011

    Yoplait Smoothie

    With the holidays just behind us and those extra pounds around our waists, I'm sure loosing those holiday inches and becoming healthier is part of all of our goals. With Yoplait Smoothies incorporated into your diet, it's a great way to be healthier and start you off on the right track to loosing a few of those extra pounds.
    Each package of Yoplait Frozen Smoothies contains one full serving of fruit (1/2 cup) and 110 to 120 calories per serving. Not only does Yoplait yogurt contain live and active cultures, but when prepared with skim milk and made according to package directions, Yoplait Frozen Smoothies are a good source of calcium. So raise your smoothie glass and toast to a new you!
    You can find Yoplait Smoothie packs in the freezer section of your local grocer. They come in four delicious flavors so you can mix it up and have some for dessert and some for a snack. Also make sure you follow Yoplait on facebook for a great coupon on your next bag of Yoplait Smoothies.

    My two favorites are Strawberry Banana and Strawberry Mango Pineapple. They're both delicious and so great. They're completely easy to use and completely delicious! Just place your Yoplait Smoothies in the blender, add milk and blend! Easy as that! They're a great snack on warm days or a great dessert at night. You don't have to feel guilty having a delicious dessert when you're indulging in a Yoplait Smoothie. You're taking care of yourself and enjoying yourself at the same time. How could it get better than that?

    I would like to send a special thank you to Yoplait and MyBlogSpark for teaming up with me to bring this great giveaway to my readers. I would also like to thank them for sending me the gift basket for review purposes.

    The gift pack includes the following items:
    * a VIP coupon to try yoplait smoothies
    * a drawstring backpack
    * a waterbottle
    * a fitness journal

    If you would like to win a Yoplait Smothies gift pack, simply friend Yoplait on facebook and come back here and let me know you did. One winner will be chosen via a random number generator and will be notified via email. The winner will have 24 hours to claim their prize, failure to do so will result in a forfeit and an alternate winner will be chosen. This giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents 18 year of age and older. The contest will close on March 1st, 2011.

    Twin Sisters Productsion - Five Little Bunnies

    Twin Sisters Productions has been in operation for 23 years and their goal is to bring quality educational and inspirational music to kids, families and those around children. We've teamed up with Twin Sisters Productions just in time to bring you a great Easter gift.

    Five Little Bunnies Die Cut Board Book & CD Set

    First I have to say that Jeffrey absolutely loves this book. He has a ton of bunny books and I do think they are his favorite. When we were pregnant with Jeffrey his first nickname was Thumper as his heart reminded his daddy of Thumper tapping his foot. Thus, the name was born.

    Jeffrey loves that he can turn the pages on his own and 'read' it to himself. As soon as I showed him the book, he jumped off the recliner to get on the floor to read. He loves to lay in front of our windows reading, where the sun shines in. That is when we're lucky enough to have some sunshine.

    One of the things we love best about this book is the fact that it comes with a CD that is great for kids. It plays for over 32 minutes and has 19 songs to listen to. We love that this book doesn't cost very much, especially when you're getting a CD, as well. This book retails for $9.99 and if you ask me... it's GREAT. If my son can sit and read it over and over without boredom, it's well worth the price.

    If you would like to purchase this book or any other products from Twin Sisters Productions, please feel free to use the promo code "FIVEBUNNY" at checkout for 30% off your order. This promo code is good through March 31, 2011.