It’s Summer and I’m Fresh as a Daisy (Giveaway Closed)

 

This is one of those rare instances that I’m going ask all 3 of the men that read this blog to push back from the computer. I’m going to talk about FEMININE HYGIENE. And with that, I’m certain that my husband’s computer screen just faded to black.

Recently I opened my mail to discover A GIFT BASKET from Summer’s Eve. Included were their Summer’s Eve Cleansing Cloths, Cleansing Wash (both in the new Island Splash scent), and a pretty pink poofy sponge.

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERA

There was a time in my not too distant past wherein a simple shower each day was all I could hope for. And those showers were brief and to the point, I can tell you, as I feared that the offspring would set the house ablaze if I lingered too long.

Now they all know where the fire extinguisher is located and how to dial “911”, so the requisite shower is had each day. But what with all the running to and fro, chauffeuring children to different activities in opposite ends of the city, grocery shopping, errand running, and GENERAL HEAT RELATED MAYHEM thanks to Florida and menopause, a simple shower no longer does the trick.

I need pick-me-ups throughout the day that include more than what a powder puff and shot of deodorant can deliver. I’ve tried other disposable cloths to aid me in the freshening up department, but OW. I’m grateful for Summer’s Eve for developing a cleansing product that is alcohol-free and gentle enough for sensitive skin, yet still does all that I ask of it. And the Cleansing Cloths come in handy individual packets so I can throw them into the black hole also known as my purse for freshening opportunities outside of the house.

I do love the new fragrance of the Cleansing Wash. My gynecologist has harped on me for years to always use a gentle pH-balanced wash that is both alcohol-free and hypoallergenic. Now I have something that smells delightful as well.

Summer’s Eve offers a number of different products that can help you stay your freshest throughout the day, so go here to learn more about what they have to offer. Also, there is even a Product Recommender page to help you discover what might best suit your own needs.

You can also join the conversation at the Summer’s Eve “Hail to the V” Facebook page and hear from women who create and design the Summer’s Eve products. (Don’t ask me what the “V” stands for because I will start giggling, because I’m 6.)

A Giveaway!

You’ll be entered into the Summer’s Eve giveaway for a $100 SpaFinder gift card by answering the following question in the comments section of this post:

“What do you do to stay feeling fresh and clean throughout the day? What are your freshen-up tips and tricks?”

This contest will run 8/5/13 through 8/31/13.

Sweepstakes Rules:
•  No duplicate comments.

•  You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

1.  Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post.

2.  Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post.

3.  Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post.

(For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.)

•  This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winner  will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail.

•  You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.

The Official Rules are available here.

This sweepstakes runs from 8/5/13 – 8/31/13.

Be sure to visit the Summer’s Eve page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ reviews and find more chances to win!

 

DeeDeeSig

Loose buns, not necessarily a bad thing

I’m still suffering from a bad hair cut.

My husband suggested that I go back to her to see if she can fix it, and he suggests that I use the following tactic, “Please fix this so I don’t harbor bad feelings towards you.”

And I wish I could.  Really I do.  But when it comes to matters involving confrontation, no matter how small, I take the avoidance is the best policy route.  Spineless.  That’s the word you’re looking for.

And no, THERE WILL BE NO PICTURES.

I’ve had to find other methods to disguise my plight.  The pony tale is of course my go-to solution.  Hats are out of the question because I’m not a hat girl, as a hat only draws all the attention to ears which stick out.  Which I suppose would draw the focus away from my hair.  But still.

I’ve discovered another solution which makes me feel a little fancier than the tried and true pony tale.  Below is a video of a tutorial on how to create the perfect loose bun.  This works perfectly for me since I’m dealing with ALL THE LAYERS and because the hair is sectioned and secured with pins, I don’t have any stragglers.  (And in the spirit of full disclosure, if I don’t have any hair gel or pomade, I’ve been known to use a very small amount of lard to tame the frizzies.  Bless the lard.)

There is a fabulous sweepstakes to go along with this at the Prizes & Promotions page at BlogHer.com:

https://www.blogher.com/blogher-tv-weekly-hair-style-sweepstakes

Sweeps Rules (4/24 – 4/30):

http://www.blogher.com/hair-sweepstakes-official-rules-week-6

(Remember, comments on this post do not count as an entry.)

DeeDeeSig

 

Poised for Success (Closed)

woman cooling herself

If you are of the male persuasion, I encourage you to run. Run like the wind. Because I’m about to talk about girly parts. And hormones. YOU KNOW…. MENOPAUSE. Without a doubt, my own husband, who peruses my blog for accuracy (he contends that I play fast and loose with the truth) read the first paragraph of this post and is now in his office, eyes rolled to the back of his head, curled up in the fetal position.

I was informed at one of my last gynecological visits, that likely I have prolonged menopause because I kept pushing out babies well into my 40’s. The time has come to pay the piper, because I am on the precipice, about to fall head first into menopause. Lately I’ve been thinking, “Gee, I hope this is menopause and not just my personality.” Besides all of the emotional and hormonal angst that I’m dealing with, there are a number of physical issues as well. Which I will only touch on, given the family friendly nature of this blog. Reluctantly, for the sake of full disclosure, I have to tell you that the other day I sneezed. And had to come up with a different outfit. Uncharacteristically, luck was on my side, as I was in the sanctity of my garage. The one with the cement floor. And that will be all that needs to be said of that moment.

I am so grateful to Poise for coming out with a line of women’s products to aid us during this tumultuous time. A while back, the good folks at Poise sent me a goody bag which contained:

Poise_Product

• Poise Liner Sample Kit (which I do not leave home without now) to help protect from light bladder leakage (like hot flashes aren’t humbling enough).

• Body Cooling Towelettes to help with those pesky above mentioned HOT FLASHES.

• Feminine Wash (glycerin free) to provide daily freshness.

• Personal Lubricant (which I can hardly type without giggling, because I’m 7).

I learned a few things while researching the subject. Fifty million women across North America are nearing or in the throes of menopause, and most of those women have an average of five menopausal symptoms. But no two experiences are alike. My five include, but are not limited to: headaches, irritability, hot flashes, and weight gain, with a side of paranoia thrown in for fun. The 2013 Product of the Year award-winning Poise Feminine Wellness line was introduced to help women approach these changes with confidence.

To learn more about the Poise Feminine Wellness Line and to sign up for a coupon or sample, visit the Poise Facebook page.

A Giveaway!

If you would like to have the opportunity to win a $100 Visa gift card, courtesy of BlogHer and Poise, all you have to do is answer the following question in the comments section of this post: “How are you approaching life’s changes confidently?”

The Rules!

No duplicate comments.

You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

  1. Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
  2. Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post
  3. Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post
  4. For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.

This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.

The Official Rules are available here.

This sweepstakes runs from 4/04/13-4/30/13.

Be sure to visit the Poise brand page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ reviews and find more chances to win!

(CONTEST HAS ENDED)

DeeDeeSig

A Pony Tale

I’ve had well documented hair issues for many years now.  Hair issues that have been made worse by A) pregnancy and/or ensuing motherhood, and B) Florida.

I’ve always had thick straight-ish hair.  No complaints about the thick part.  But hormone changes have made way for WILD BRILLO PAD hair, and then you add Florida humidity into the mix?  Think Rosanne Rosannadanna.

The discovery of the Chi (fancy flat iron) revolutionized my life.  But there are days when not even the Chi can get all of my hair into the same zip code.  And add in the fact that my last two hair cuts were exacted by two different women who evidently were harboring pent up anger and I happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

To them “lightly layered” meant BRING OUT THE GARDEN SHEARS while spinning me around in the chair.  And because I’m a conflict avoidance type of personality, I smile, pay the required bill plus tip, and then sit in my car and cry.

I fear that one day some hapless individual will be on the receiving end of MY PENT UP ANGER.

All this to say, I am highly dependent on the pony tail.  I’m forever looking for a way to make the pony tail look INTENTIONAL and WELL THOUGHT OUT.

The following how-to might help you, as it has helped me.  What I’ve discovered is that slightly curling my unruly hair using a large barrel curling iron or large heat rollers somehow magically make my pony tails come together and not look like I just crawled out of bed. Watch all the way to the end to see how he pulls the whole look together with a HAIR PIN (not just for picking locks)!

I just love it when I can promote a sweepstakes, and there’s a really fun one going on at the Prizes & Promotions page at Blogher.com.

Head over to this page to see the sweepstakes!

Sweeps Rules (3/27-4/2):

And to see the rules for this contest, go here!

(Comments on this post are not an entry.)

BUT, because inquiring minds want to know:  What is your “bad hair day” go-to miracle fix?

DeeDeeSig

The P&G eStore – AKA, shopping in my bunny slippers

It is no secret that I’m one of those annoying shoppers that enters the automatic doors laden down with all manner of canvas bags, clip board with color coded shopping list (arranged by aisle), and carrying my index file which houses my neatly categorized coupons.  All of this sounds and looks very organized.  That is, unless I have to shop with my 3 children.

I’ve recently stated that grocery shopping with 3 children should be the standard litmus test to determine if one is ready for parenthood.

I most certainly am not.

When I am forced to shop with children, my usual orderly manner of perusing the aisles and matching up deals is thrown right out the window.  The trip morphs into kamikaze style procurement of staples and such, and I’m just lucky if I leave the store with the same number of children I entered with.  Much less the needed grocery AND beauty items.  It is the beauty item portion of the list which suffers the most.

Enter the P&G eStore shopping experience.  I am a huge fan of Proctor & Gamble products, including everything from household needs to those all important beauty and cosmetic supplies.  The P&G eStore has assembled some wonderful items at really great prices.  AND THEY HAVE EVEN INCLUDED eCOUPONS TO USE AS WELL.

P&G, you do know my love language.

A few of the items lurking in my online grocery cart include the Duracell AA Battery Bundle (28 count for $17.99), the Olay Smooth Finish Facial Hair Removal Kit ($24.99), and the CoverGirl Lash Blast 24 hour Mascara (a favorite) ($7.99).

Olay-image

And get this:
•  The P&G eStore is offering free shipping with a $25 purchase.
•  15% off on a first-time order, using the promo code: A9Z-MN5-KY3-ISA.
•  Free samples with every order.

There are many many more items listed at the P&G eStore, I’ve just highlighted a few of my favorites.  And don’t worry, they explain how to use your eCoupons to get the very best deal.

I can now shop for some of my favorite house and beauty supplies from the comfort of my bark-o-lounger.  In my bunny slippers.

If only grocery shopping could be this easy!

DeeDeeSig

With age comes humor (a giveaway) Closed


In an effort to dissuade the children from focusing their prying eyes on my private emails as they casually pass by my desktop, Fiddledaddy installed some sort of gizmo that applies an electrical shock if a child should touch my keyboard.

Oh, I kid. But what a most excellent technological invention I’ve just come up with.

What he actually did was to activate some sort of screen saver that randomly displays all of the 3000 some-odd photographs trapped housed in my iPhoto. The screen saver appears whenever I leave my computer for any length of time. Of course it has the opposite affect and acts as a magnet because this is the only form of photo album that the children have of their youth. But at least my very fascinating email is forgotten by those of my children that can read.

The point of this is (yes, astoundingly, there is a point) that I’ve had chance to view photographic evidence that my children were once young. Even more importantly, I’ve been able to remember what I looked like when I was more youthful and well rested. (In other words, before children.)

My daughter noticed one such picture and casually remarked, “Mom, you don’t look any different now.” (She’s back in the will.) I’m one of those people that is typically late to the party. I didn’t lose my two front teeth until I was 10, didn’t get married until I was in my late 30’s, and had my last child at age 44.

The last bit of information is simply proof that God has a sense of humor and is not afraid to use it.

For anyone doing the math, this puts me just slightly passed my 52nd birthday. And I’m not afraid to admit it. You might say middle aged, but I prefer well seasoned. In the spirit of full disclosure, I will tell you that I have days in which I feel a good deal older, but I know that I don’t look my age. And I certainly act far more immature than I am. Just ask my neighbors as they recently witnessed the annual underwear dance when our Florida temperatures dipped below 70.

I’d like to tell you that having very young children in my mid-life is my secret to looking youthful. But that would be a lie. I’ve earned every single grey hair and wrinkle from later-in-life-motherhood. I honestly believe that looking and acting younger than my years is the gift of laughter. My children make me laugh, my husband is hysterical, and best of all I’m surrounded by amazing and beautiful women friends of all ages that I spend a good deal of quality time giggling with. I do find it amusing that I have underwear which are older than a couple of those girlfriends. (I’ve managed to mention UNDERWEAR twice now in one post. A personal best.)

Let me be clear that it’s not all sunshine and happy faces in a household that contains a mother navigating menopause while at the same time two daughters are embroiled in PUBERTY. Generally it can be a free-for-all in our house, but I CHOOSE to find the humor. That’s my beauty secret.

Circa 1989, before children (age 29)

Present, after 3 children (age 52)

A Giveaway!

Olay (a staple in my beauty arsenal) is celebrating their 60th anniversary this year. This is a company that chooses to celebrate a woman’s age by empowering them to challenge what’s possible and to be proud of their years.

I am excited to have an opportunity to give away a $100 Visa gift card, courtesy of Olay. All you have to do to be entered is to answer the following question in the comments section of this post:

“What is your secret for looking and feeling young?”

The Rules:

• No duplicate comments.

• You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

a) Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post

“b) Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “”#SweepstakesEntry””; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post”

c) Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post.

d) For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.

• This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.

• The Official Rules are available here.

• This sweepstakes runs from 11/13 to 12/13.

Be sure to visit the Olay 60th Anniversary brand page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ reviews and find more chances to win!

Cross My Heart (plus a giveaway) Closed

We have been fortunate enough to have our health insurance covered through my husband’s membership in the Screen Actors Guild throughout most of our marriage. That includes, if you’re counting, 3 births, yearly wellness exams, ongoing treatment for Lyme Disease, and numerous trips to our local Urgent Care Center because that’s what you do when you have 3 children.

Since our coverage is through a Blue Company, we’re able to take advantage of a program offered for members, called Blue365. A national program offered by the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association to members of participating Blue Cross and/or Blue Shield Companies, Blue365 incorporates a “Groupon-like” feel by offering products and services which are discounted and help to promote “healthy lifestyle choices.”

As I was perusing the site, I learned that a few of the deals are listed under categories such a Fitness, Healthy Eating, Living, Personal Care, and Wellness. In other words, the program is concentrated on helping members stay healthy by making good choices every day and aiding them in incorporating fun and healthy activities into their lives. They are also keeping in mind the idea that families are always searching for ways to stay fit, enjoy good nutrition, and even travel, all while staying within a budget, hence the discounts offered. I know I love a good deal.

One of the affiliated stores offering an online discount that caught my eye was Reebok.com. Reebok is offering members a 20% discount plus free shipping. I’ve always been a fan of Reebok shoes and recently I became enamored with their active wear. So much so that I’ve ordered this:

 

(Just for the sake of full disclosure, these are not my shapely legs.)

These are the Shapewear Action Capri, and what sets them apart from my usual stretchy pants fare that I grace our gym in is that they have Shape n’ Hug panels that will help to smooth and shape key trouble areas. My grand hope is that I can discontinue wearing large oversized t-shirts over my workout pants in an effort to disguise my, well, imperfections. My ulterior motive for purchasing these may have a good deal to do with the hope that if I feel more confident in my workout gear, I’ll actually go and, you know, WORK OUT MORE OFTEN.

To sign up for Blue365 and learn more about the deals they are offering, go here. If your Blue Company isn’t yet participating in the Blue365 Program, you can still sign up and be alerted when your Blue Company joins.

A Giveaway!

All participating commenters in the Blue365 Program have a chance to win one of two $500 Visa gift cards. All you have to do to be entered for a chance to win is answer the following question in the comments section of this post:

“How are you planning to stay healthy through the Fall and holiday season?”

The Rules

•  No duplicate comments.

•  You may receive two (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

a) Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post

b) Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: #SweepstakesEntry; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post

c) Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post

d) For those with no Twitter or blog, read the Official Rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.

Entries from all participating blogs will be pooled for winner selection; only two (2) entries per household.  This giveaway is open to U.S. residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to respond, otherwise a new winner will be selected.

•  The Official Rules are available here.

•  This Blue365 Program Sweepstakes runs from 10/16/12 11/12/12, therefore I will keep comments open through Monday,November 12th, 2012.

•  Be sure to visit theBlue365 page on BlogHer.com where you can read other blogger’s posts!

The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association is an association of independent, locally operated Blue Cross and/or Blue Shield Companies. BlogHer is an independent and/or separate company providing marketing/promotional services and does not provide Blue Cross and/or Blue Shield products or services.

(Contest has closed)

Big IQ Kids Giveaway! (Closed)

We’ve been homeschooling now for 8 long years.  I’m pretty sure I’ve been through nearly every curriculum possible.  We began with A Beka when Emme was in Kindergarten, and then I got up the nerve to branch out on my own.  Some of the programs that I’ve used with my 3 students are (in no particular order) Math U See, Saxon, A Reason for Handwriting, A Reason for Spelling, Accelerated Christian Education, KONOS, Bob Jones, Ordinary Parent’s Guide to Teaching Reading, and many others.

This is the beauty of homeschooling.  If something isn’t working, you have the freedom to go in a different direction.  And what works for one child may not work for another, even though they share the same DNA.

What we’ve settled on now that is working well for us is:

The 2nd Grader:  Singapore Math, Hooked on Phonics, Spelling by Sound & Structure, and A Reason for Handwriting.

The 5th Grader:  Spelling Power, Teaching Textbooks, Intermediate Language Lessons, & Mavis Beacon Typing.

The 7th Grader:  Spelling Power, Teaching Textbooks, All In One English, Mavis Beacon Typing, and Classical Conversations (Latin, Geography, Rhetoric, Institute of Excellence in Writing, Science)

And for all 3 I’m still doing My Father’s World (Creation to the Greeks) for History/Geography/Bible and Science for the younger 2.

Oh dear Lord, yes, it’s a lot of work.  And it will all be worth it when they can support not only themselves, but their poor bedraggled parents in their old age.  Fingers crossed.

But there is one thing that has remained a constant throughout all of these homeschooling years (besides my dependence on extra-strength Excedrin).  I have relied on the online program Big IQ Kids to reinforce the major subjects for all 3 kids.  I started using Big IQ Kids when Emme was in the 1st grade.  I was hooked on Big IQ Kids Spelling Time and loved how I could modify the weekly lessons to include the words that were in her spelling curriculum.  And now that she’s in the 7th grade, she still uses it to reinforce the review test words for Spelling Power.

Emme created the girl with the guitar as her avatar.

In other words, no matter what spelling curriculum I’ve used all of these years, I’ve been able to reinforce with the Big IQ Kids Spelling program.  And I have to say, I do believe it would work fine as a stand alone curriculum.

I expanded our membership the next year to include the math program, to aid me in the dreaded multiplication drills.  And now both girls have a good grasp of their U.S. Geography because that program helps them with state location, capitals, and abbreviations.

About a year or two into the program, I contacted the sweet creator of Big IQ Kids and told them that I wanted to help get the word out about the program because I’ve loved it so much, so they’ve graciously allowed me to host a yearly giveaway.

Big IQ Kids has evolved over the years to now include:

  • Spelling Junior – this is the one that I use the most for all 3 kids!
  • Math Facts – drills all 4 math functions, and upon mastery, the child moves up.
  • U.S. Geography
  • Vocabulary Junior –
  • Spelling + Vocabulary Upgrade

And of course the game page is now enormous, and you can set your child’s account to allow them to play a game if they finish the lesson, or just on weekends, or however you wish to set it up.  I’ve always let my kids earn a game coin upon completion of a lesson.  They will sometimes repeat a lesson just to earn another game coin.  We in the homeschool world like to call that REINFORCEMENT.

A Giveaway!

I have an opportunity to give away a one-year Big IQ Kids Bundle (a $79.99 value) which includes all 5 programs plus full access to the games page.  All you have to do is head over to Big IQ Kids and poke around a bit (you can try the programs out for free)!  Then come back here and tell me (in the comments of this post) which program would most benefit your child?

The Rules:

•  You must answer the prompt given.
•  No duplicate comments/ one entry per person.
•  This giveaway is open internationally, age 18 or over.
•  Winners will be selected via random draw, and will notified by e-mail.
•  You have 48 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.

I will keep comments open until Saturday, September 22nd at 9:00 PM, EST.