Friday, October 31, 2008
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Remember trading cards? You know, when you were little and would trade collector cards with your friends? Well, a new type of trading cards is coming out for young girls.
Bella Sara is an online game of sorts. As they state:
"...a magical place full of beauty and joy where you may activate your Bella Sara trading cards and collect horses in an online stable. A safe world of fun and adventure lies just beyond the stable gate, with games, puzzles and activities for you to enjoy with your favorite horses. Once your horse is in her warm, comfy stable, you may care for her by feeding, brushing, cleaning her stall and making her happy. Along with your horses and your card collection, we have games, activities, and other features for you to enjoy."
Once I signed up, I had to enter a code found on the card. This code allowed me to get a new horse put in a stable. Once I had a horse, I could feed and care for it as I would a real horse. I could aslo train my horse. Doing all of this, I was able to earn horseshoes which I could buy things for my stable with.
On November 6, Bella Sara's website is starting their 10 day celebration. The website will introduce Bella's new baby. At this time, you will have the opportunity to win prizes. You will receive daily gifts and will be able to download birth certificates for some of the baby horses.
Honestly, I am not sure if my girls would enjoy this. Other online activities are a lot easier to navigate around and learn how it works. I can usually teach myself anything, but this one I had to actually sit there and focus on learning it. Once you get the hang of it, I could see how it would be a fun outlet for a child to have.
Baby Sara trading cards are sold at various stores, including Barnes and Noble, Target, Wal-Mart and K-Mart. They retail for $2.99 per pack.
Posted by Alaina @ Three Ladies and a Dad at 9:43 PM
I just went grocery shopping for this week and next week and my total was only $60.24. Like I said, something must be wrong. We will find out when I start to make something and not have an ingredient.
Off to make Vanilla Scented Granola...yum!
Posted by Alaina @ Three Ladies and a Dad at 8:13 PM
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Click here to visit Idahoan. (They make Idaho Potato Pouches.) In the upper right corner, you will see a link that says "Print coupon". Click on that to take a short survey. Depending on your answers, you may get a coupon as a PDF file for a Free Package of Any Idahoan Product.
Get your free Turtle Chex Mix Bar if you sign up for the Betty Crocker newsletter.
Get your free copy of You: The Smart Patient. This may or may not work. It states the first 1000 stories after July 31, 2008. It may be worth a shot though.
Don't forget to go to your local Taco Bell today for your free taco. This is part of their "Steal a Base, Steal a Taco" promotion during the World Series.
You may visit any participating Taco Bell between 2:00 and 6:00 pm to get your free Seasoned Beef Crunchy Taco.
Posted by Alaina @ Three Ladies and a Dad at 7:15 AM
Monday, October 27, 2008
Amy over at MomAdvice was recently voted #8 on the list of The Top 50 Most Influential Women in Social Media. Instead of tooting her own horn for selfish reasons, she decided to use this exposure to raise awareness about her local shelter, Faith Mission. You see, Amy lives in an area that has been hit pretty hard by the current economic crisis. Faith Mission is in desperate need of some items, including many that I have gotten for next to nothing at Walgreen's. I am currently putting a package together that will include:
- Three bottles of Robitussin Cold and Cough
- One bottle of Dimetapp Elxixer Cold and Allergy
- One bottle of Dimetapp Cold and Cough
- One bottle of Robitussin Night Time
- Two packages of Junior Maalox
- Two bottles of Maalox for Adults
- One package of Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold Formula
- An unknown amount of shampoo and conditioner
- Shaving cream
- Three packages of disposable razors
- An unknown amount of deodorant
It is time we step up.
Posted by Alaina @ Three Ladies and a Dad at 8:17 PM
I'm back! After a small break, I am finally back to planning meals. It is such a relief already knowing the weeks will be easier with a meal planned.
Tuesday: Rigatoni with Spinach & White Bean Sauce and a salad
Wednesday: Chicken and Brown Rice, with Mixed Veggies in the Crock-Pot
Thursday: Vegetable Soup and Crackers
Friday: Crescent Mummy Dogs, Macaroni & Cheese and Corn (Happy Halloween!)
Saturday: Out to eat...Sushi, I'm sure. Jeremy and I are on a sushi kick.
Sunday: I will throw in a double batch of Crock-Pot Fried Rice before church. Perfect for lunch and supper.
Snacks: Yogurt, Graham Crackers and Vanilla Scented Granola. I also want to try this as cereal. Yummy!
Head over to Laura for more menu-planning ideas! Also, be sure to visit my giveaway, either by clicking here or scrolling down just a bit.
Woo-hoo...it's that time again! This weeks kicks off Bloggy Giveaways Carnival and boy, do I have a good one!
On Sunday, the girls and I attended a private Blog Moms' Mixer at Build-A-Bear Workshop in St. Louis. It was the first time we have been to Build-A-Bear but we will definitely be going back. The girls both got the chance to make a High School Musical themed bear, complete with an outfit, accessories and of course, a heart. The girls are already best friends with their bears. (Macie named her bear Ashley and Zoa named her bear Jacksey. Ummm, okay.)
My camera cord is still missing, but you can view Build-A-Bears Flickr account to get a preview. I am so excited about their pictures because there are some really great shots of the girls and they did such a great job of capturing the fun.
There were a few mom bloggers there and I can't wait to dive into their blogs and learn more about them. All of our children got along well for the two hours we were at Build-A-Bear, which speaks volumes because it lasted right through nap time!
Probably the most exciting part of our mixer was that Maxine Clark, the owner and founder of Build-A-Bear, took time out of her schedule to hang out with us during the mixer. She helped the girls stuff their bear as you will see in the pictures. (She is wearing a red jacket.) She was so nice and patient with all the children! Ms. Maxine also gave us an autographed copy of her book titled, The Bear Necessities:Building a Company With a Heart. I started skimming through it on the way home and seemed very interesting to read, even if you are not wanting to start your own business.
I don't have a copy of the book to give away, but Build-A-Bear Workshop graciously gave me a $25.00 Gift Card to give to one of my readers! I also have a $5.00 off a $25.00 purchase coupon to add to it as well.
In order to be considered for this giveaway, please leave me a comment telling me which bear the child in your life would love to have. (They could be a daughter or son, niece or nephew...) Want to earn extra entries? For one extra entry, subscribe to my blog. If you should subscribe, please leave an additional comment telling me you have done so. For another entry, blog about this contest and leave me a comment with your permalink address.
Only US addresses are eligible for this giveaway. This giveaway will close on Saturday, November 1 at 12:00 p.m., CST. Please leave your e-mail address so I can contact you. I will choose a winner using Random.org and you will have 48 hours to reply. Should you not contact me within 48 hours, a new winner will be chosen.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
The weather here in Missouri is just plain wet. Don't get me wrong, I love love love rain. But it is cold and rainy and coffee sounds so yummy right now.
But...when I make coffee, I want to drink the whole dang pot. Every ounce of it with some delicious creamer. If I were to do that, I would be up all night tonight. My goal is to limit myself to one cup. (And buy decaf this weekend!)
What's your plans for the weekend? Mine is what I do best (or worst, however you want to think of it), clean. Our realtor called Tuesday and wants to have another open house on Sunday. I guess it works out pretty good. Sunday, we will be in St. Louis during the open house. It is just going to be the girls and I and I can't wait to share the details with you.
I have some pictures I want to show you so bad, but I cannot find my cord that attaches my camera to our computer. April, I feel your pain about missing the cord. I guess I should add a cord to my shopping list for the weekend.
The girls are doing well. I know I have not posted a lot about them lately. Just blame my little funk I'm in. Macie went to the pumpkin patch with school yesterday and had a blast. Zoa has officially hit the terrible threes, almost fours. Two just passed us by way too easy!
That's it for now. I need to go check on supper and
John and Kate Macie and Zoa needs me to quit typing so they can put their sextuplets to sleep. Oh my.
Posted by Alaina @ Three Ladies and a Dad at 5:33 PM
Taco Bell told fans if a base was to be stolen during any game at the World Series, they would give each customer a free taco.
Since there was a stolen base during Game 1, on Tuesday, October 28, Taco Bell will be giving customers one Crunchy Seasoned Beef Taco. (How's that mouthful?) You have to go between 2:00 and 6:00 pm.
I realize this is a few days away so I will post a reminder for everyone closer to Tuesday.
Posted by Alaina @ Three Ladies and a Dad at 9:07 AM
Remember when I told you about the Precious Girls' Club? The site is now up and running and I wanted to offer you a code that will get you a premium Rainbow membership for one month in the PCG. It is valued at $3.95. The code is: EJ4-RT8J-RU4A.
I want to clarify that the standard membership is free, but you can upgrade to the Rainbow. You don't have to pay for anything once this code expires. You will just continue on with your free membership.
If you choose to pay for a Rainbow membership, $1.00 of the $3.95 fee goes directly to St. Jude Children's Hospital. Which is pretty dang neat, if I do say so myself.
I hope you and the little girl in your life take advantage of this and have fun!
Posted by Alaina @ Three Ladies and a Dad at 8:20 AM
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
TwoCentsSurvey is another company that pays you to take survey. You receive e-mails and see if you qualify for the survey . If you do, they will pay you between $1-$5 each time. Once you earn $10.00, you may request a check. You can sign up for TwoCentsSurvey here.
Inbox Dollars works in a similar way to all the other survey companies. You can take surveys, play games and do quite a few other things. Be sure to read the fine print on all the offers. To be safe on this site, I just participate in the surveys. Once you acquire $30 in your account, you may request a check. You can sign up for Inbox Dollars here. If you like, you can use my email address - threeladiesandadad(at)yahoo(dot)com - as the referral address.
Team Mom is a product review company. They are looking for moms, (obviously) who are regular bloggers, meaning you blog on a pretty consistent schedule. If I remember correctly, they may want to know your statistics, as in how many visitors you get each day. They send out products about once a month and your job is to honestly review them. You may find more information out about Team Mom here.
So, that is the basics of some companies I am familiar with enough to recommend. Please, research the company yourselves before joining. It may be something you dislike, but I like.
I hope this helps!
Posted by Alaina @ Three Ladies and a Dad at 7:50 AM
Monday, October 20, 2008
I have been asked how I became a product tester. There are many agencies and organizations out there that are more than willing to let you try their product. Most of the time, all you have to do is write a review on it. I will lists the companies I am familiar with, but please mind you, I am still relatively new to this and I am learning as well.
I will start with some of the most simple ones and build off of those. I am also going to list some companies that pay me to do surveys. Some of the links provided will be referral links. Although I would appreciate being 'compensated' for sharing these companies with you through referral links, please know you do not have to use them.
The following are some simple survey sites I have found around the internet. I started with MyPoints, which I have shared with you before. MyPoints is a company that sends you e-mails containing advertisements. If you click the little button on the bottom, you can either learn more about the company and possibly purchase something. Or, you can click 'No, thanks.' Even if you click No Thanks, you still will be credited 5 points. If you plan to do online shopping, you can do it through their website and earn points for every dollar you spend at one of their participating partners. You also get points for printing coupons, playing games and taking surveys. The link I have provided is not a referral link, but if you would like a referral e-mail, you can e-mail me and I will send you an invitation. Once you build up enough points, you can redeem them for free gift cards to different merchants. (If you are interested, you can learn more about MyPoints here.)
My Survey is one that will send you periodic surveys to complete for points. The surveys take no more than about minutes minutes on average. Most surveys are ten points. Once you reach 1000 points you can redeem them for a $10.00 check, $10.00 contribution to one of their listed charities, or you can purchase something in their online store. So far, I have received $50.00 from My Survey. You can sign up for My Survey here.
BzzAgent is an online product testing website. They will send you various e-mail campaigns which you will be asked if you would like to participate in. I just completed my first campaign on Smucker's Uncrustables and received a coupon for a free four-pack of Smucher's Uncrustables, plus several $.75 coupons to share with friends and family. The main goal of BzzAgent is word of mouth advertising and it helps if you talk to many people per day to share your experience with a particular product. They will send you a product or a coupon for a free product. You are then able to try the product and tell people , your thoughts about it, as well as review it on BzzAgent. You can sign up for BzzAgent here.
MomSelect is an online program that reaches out to mom's for their opinions on various programs. Whether it be product review, survey, blogger mixers or an in-home party, MomSelect values your opinion. I am still learning a bit about this company, but I have a feeling after this Sunday, I will know them a lot more than I do now. Details on that to follow. You can register for MomSelect here.
This is taking a lot longer than expected. There will be another post detailing more companies I am involved with so come back, ya here?
Hope you all have a great week!
Posted by Alaina @ Three Ladies and a Dad at 12:02 PM
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
How great would it be to have a toy that entertains your kids for hours and uses no batteries and no electricity? The Draw 'N Doodle from Aquadoodle is just that. It uses only water! You simply fill a special pen with water and your children will be fascinated by it!
You may think that once they draw, you have to wait a while until it dries so they can keep drawing. Actually, it does dry rather quickly. Macie and Zoa had enough room to draw their own artwork and within minutes, it was starting to dry so they could continue.
My only recommendation is to make sure your children's hands are washed and clean before beginning. The Draw 'N Doodle is not machine washable, but you make clean it by hand if it needs it.
Once you are done doodling, you simply roll it up and put it away. It is a great portable toy to take on vacations because there is just one mat and one pen to keep track of.
Aquadoodle offers many great toys, but this is something that I would love to buy for someone else.
The Aquadoodle Draw 'N Doodle is available from many online retailers and possibly a store near you. It retails for $24.99 and is recommended for ages 3 and older.
What person does not love bubble baths? In order to get the 'picture perfect' bubbles, you need to use a lot of bubble bath too. The Bath Blizzard from Kid Kleen is just the thing for kids and adults alike!
The Bath Blizzard has a small handle that attached over your bathtub faucet. Once you turn it on, bubbles flow out of the contraption. And more bubbles!
This would be a great idea for any parent with a child who hates baths. Luckily, both of my girls have always loved bath time, but it may be the thing that makes your little one want to take a bath.
Kid Kleen offers only products that are safe and non-toxic. They are always wheat free, tear free, and hypoallergenic. You can have a peace of mind about any skin problems flaring up from Kid Kleen products.
Something else I liked was you do not have to use any particular type of bubble bath to fill your machine. Quite a few companies will try to get you to keep purchasing their brand of refills. This one does not and I find that very convenient for the consumer.
The Bath Blizzard from Kid Kleen retails for $19.99 and is recommended for children 3 years and older.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Everything that has happened these lasts few months is starting to bring me down.
Our lives at home must return to normal. I have to buy groceries, clip coupons (Curious Cousin...wanna help? Just kidding!), clean (our bathrooms are icky!) , do laundry (we are living out of our dryer), spend time with my children, spend time with my husband, etc., but the motivation is not there. (Well, except for the last two.)
Last night, I made spaghetti. Jeremy told me it was good and I told him is was a feat in and of itself that I cooked. I didn't care what it tasted like. But I cooked - for the first time since I can remember. We have been living on Burger King, Taco Bell...you get the picture.
For those of you who don't know, I love to cook. Believe it or not, it's my downtime. It's my release at the end of the day. For me, there is nothing like getting out my wooden cutting board and chopping up some fresh veggies.
We have not had fresh veggies in so long. And you know how I feel about eating good food, food that is good for you.
I was thinking on the way home last night - if I didn't have the girls, I would be a lazy bum right about now. The couch would have a deep impression of my body. That's how I feel. They are keeping me alive, so to speak. (Don't take that literally.)
These two funerals really made me wonder if something were to happen to me tomorrow, would my family know how I felt. The girls? I have not spent enough time with them lately. They need me like I need them. Jeremy? He has been the best husband throughout all if this. Patient, understanding, patient. But, I need to spend time with him too. And once again, our lives must get back to normal.
I guess this is the new normal.
I will probably be going to the doctor next week. Depression, sadly enough, is not something new to me. I am just going to ride this out for a few days and see what comes of it.
Posted by Alaina @ Three Ladies and a Dad at 1:17 PM
Monday, October 13, 2008
Just wanted to let everyone know Whitney and Adam's wedding went perfect. She had the funnest wedding reception I have ever been to (including my own!) and she had so many people tell her, "You set the bar for what a wedding should be".
I will spare the details and let her tell you.
Jessie was definitely with us. She sent us some signs which was so comforting. We thought about her constantly.
Feel free to click over to Whitney's blog and leave her a comment. I know she would love reading them.
Posted by Alaina @ Three Ladies and a Dad at 9:57 AM
Friday, October 10, 2008
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
I am taking an unexpected break from blogging for a few days . Last night, I received word that someone else has passed away. I just don't think blogging will fit in my schedule for the next few days.
I have a visitation to attend for Jessie tonight. Tomorrow is her funeral. I am taking the whole day off work. I just don't think I will be able to work after it.
I suppose tomorrow evening I will have another visitation to go to. Then Friday will be the second funeral. (This 'time line' is something that I think will be. No definites yet.)
I never had to go to two visitations and two funerals in three days. I guess there is a first for everything.
Then on to the weekend...Saturday is Whitney's wedding. I am so happy for you Whitney. You deserve every bit of happiness that comes your way.
Sunday, I think I might be able to sleep. I am not sure how I am awake now to function. Adrenaline, I guess. I have not worn makeup in three days and I wear make-up everywhere. But, I just have not been motivated to do anything.
Kudos to you all for putting up with me. With us. Thank you for your prayers throughout everything.
I was chatting with a friend earlier and I told her I'm sorry for being selfish. I don't mean for this blog to be such a downer. I want it to be a happy place to come to. A place you can come to to get a little laughter. But given my life the last couple weeks, I have failed at that. And' I'm sorry.
With that being said, please leave a comment telling me something going on with you. Anything. I enjoy reading your comments, even if it's a simple 'Hello'. They perk me up every time.
So...how you been?
Monday, October 6, 2008
As I type, Whitney and I are sitting here at Barnes Hospital. The ICU waiting room is almost bare, with most of the patients families gone for the night. The only table available has an air conditioner right beside it.
Have I ever mentioned I'm cold natured?
But enough about that - onto the point of this post.
We received a phone call Sunday afternoon. After a better day yesterday, Jessie took a turn for the worse today. We are not sure of the outcome, but we need another miracle. With respect for the family, I'm going to stop there.
Please say a prayer for her, her family and friends and wisdom for the doctors and nurses.
We are not giving up as God is in complete control of the situation.
I am not sure if I sound like a broken record by asking for your constant prayers. I hope you understand.
Sunday, October 5, 2008
Here are the weekly deals at Walgreen's:
Scrubbing Bubbles/Shout/Windex - $2/5 with $2.00 Easy Saver Rebate
Buy 2 Windex for $5.00
Use 2 $1 Coupons
Submit for $2.00 ESR
Total: $1.00 for 2 Windex
Scrubbing Bubbles Auto Shower Cleaner - $19.99 with $10 ESR
Buy 1 Shower Cleaner for $19.99
Use $5 Coupon
Submit for $10 ESR
Pledge/Drano is $3.49 with $1.00 ESR
Buy 1 Pledge for $3.49
Use $1.00 coupon
Submit for $1.00 ESR
Glade Plugins Oil Refills/Plugins/Candles - $1.99 with $1.00 ESR
Buy 2 Glade Plug-Ins = $3.98
Use BOGO coupon
Submit for $2.00 ESR
Total: Free with .01 overage
Glade Wisp Flameless Candle or Fan - $5.99 with $3.00 RR
Buy 2 Flameless Candles
Use BOGO coupon
Use 1 $5/1 Glade Flameless Candle from 9.7.08 SmartSource (if your store lets you use this)
Total: $5.99 or $.99 for 2 candles plus $3 RR
ROC Skincare is 25% off. If you buy $20.00 worth, get $10.00 Register Rewards (RR)
Buy 4 Cleansers at $5.99 - $23.96
Use 4 $5.00 coupons
Total: $3.96 plus $10.00 RR
These are just a few of the deals. I will let you know if I see more.
Posted by Alaina @ Three Ladies and a Dad at 7:00 AM
Saturday, October 4, 2008
I have never been more excited about urine! We just found out Jessie's kidneys are starting to work again...she is peeing! Her blood pressure is also becoming more stable!
We are so very happy about this!
This is a very small step in the right direction. But it's a step. That's all we were hoping for right now - pee. I have never wanted someone to pee like this!
Thanks and continue lifting her up in prayer!
Friday, October 3, 2008
Please say all the prayers you can for Jessie. (Start with around late April.) Things are not improving, and if anything, getting worse.
She is still in the medically-induced coma and on the ventilator. Her kidneys are starting to feel the effects of everything and are having a hard time keeping up. The pneumonia has yet to improve from the antibiotics and the statistics are not in her favor.
Please, I am pleading.
Thursday, October 2, 2008
Here is another $5/20 coupon. Once again, it's only good on Friday and Saturday.
Here is a scenario I have came up with:
1 Gilette Razor - $8.99
1 Oral B Cross Action Toothbrush - $4.49
3 Children's Tylenol - $14.97
2 Pert Plus - $7.58
Revelon Color Silk Haircolor - $1.99
Use Gilette $4.00 Manufacturer Coupon (MQ)
Use Oral B $1.00 MQ
Use 3 Tylenol ESC $1.50 coupons
Use 3 Tylenol $1.00 MQ
Use 2 Pert Plus ESC $2.50 coupons
Total after $5/20 coupon: $15.52
Gilette RR - $4.00
Oral B RR - $4.49
Revelon RR - $1.00
Tylenol RR - $5.00
Spending - $15.52
Getting Back - $14.49 in RR
Total Out of Pocket - $1.03!
Posted by Alaina @ Three Ladies and a Dad at 9:30 PM
Register to receive your free 1-year subscription to Scholastic Parent and Child.
From their website:
"... Parent & Child shares the goals of every parent: To help raise children who are ready to learn, willing to share, and eager to be a part of the wonders of our world."
I hope it comes!
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
I have not been grocery shopping in three weeks. Yes, three weeks.
Which is kind of expensive if you only buy enough groceries for one week at a time. We have been eating out way too much. I had every intention to use the menu I made. But it just seemed to fall through the cracks, so to speak.
Coupons have not been clipped in weeks. With the exception of clipping this past Monday night. I have a six inch stack of inserts just begging for some attention.
My house resembles this. Laundry has been kept up enough to wear clean clothes every day. At least that's a plus!
The last three weeks have been an emotional roller coaster. But it is time to start putting my house back in order. You see, I clean my house if I think the UPS guy might walk in. I hate having a dirty house and I get embarrassed easily.
"What will they they of me?"
I am way too worried about what people think of me.
But... tonight is the night. I need to at least make a dent in this ever growing list of things to do.
In fact, I must clean tonight. We re-listed our house, with a lower price, and about ten realtors are going to come take a peek at it tomorrow.
This weekend I will go grocery shopping. With my clipped coupons.
Hopefully, a sense of normalcy will start to take affect. One can only hope.
Any confessions you would like to share?