Same Blog-New Place

This is now my old blog address-I am now one of those Wordpress geeks and my blog now sits at . So, please visit me there and if you subscribe to it, you will be my new best friend and chocolate chip cookies will fall from the sky.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Social Moms For Good-Save the Children REAL Awards

Save the Children has announced the launch of The REAL Awards, a first-of-its-kind global awards program designed to develop greater respect and appreciation for health workers and the lifesaving care they provide globally, as well as in the United States. The REAL Awards is made possible by the support of presenting sponsors Medtronic Foundation, The Merck Company Foundation, and Masimo Foundation for Ethics, Innovation and Competition in Healthcare, and supporting partners GlaxoSmithKline, Novartis and Time Inc.

The REAL Awards are a first-of-its kind global awards program to honor health workers! How cool?!

So, if you know someone you want to nominate, there still is time!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Thyme Maternity Yoga Pant

When I was pregnant, I remember the one thing that I hated; finding clothes that fit and looked cute too. I mainly stuck to sweat pants and sweat shirts because I really couldn't find anything.

Nowadays, there are more choices for moms-to-be. One such company is Thyme Maternity. They offer a styling line of maternity clothing for women. A fellow pregnant reviewer on our team got the chance to try out the Thyme Maternity Yoga Pants.  She gave a thumbs up on comfort and ease to put on these cute pants.

These pants feature a belly panel that can be worn folded down or up. The comfortable jersey fabric hugs your tummy and is perfect for lounging or staying active.

 I love yoga pants whether pregnant or not!

They support your growing tummy and work well for almost all stages.


Fabric Content:

95% Cotton

5% Spandex







Where to buy:

And in select Babies“R”Us locations

in the U.S.

You can also find Thyme Maternity here:
Facebook page (
 Twitter handle (@ThymeMaternity)

Monday, November 26, 2012

Making Money Monday-I mean, saving Monday...

Instead of the usual Making Money Monday, I've decided to let you know about where to save today since it's Cyber Monday.
I don't know if you went out on Black Friday (Thursday). We went out on the actual Friday and just had fun hanging out. It was dead compared to past Black Fridays, so it was nice. I got to see my sister and hang out at Starbucks.

Today, it's online shopping time-my favorite. Shop in your PJs and drink your coffee.

Now, I hope before you start off shopping, you sign up over at Ebates. I try to remember to shop through them, but sometimes I forget and I kick myself afterward.

My first pick is Amazon. You can usually find everything at Amazon if you can't find it other places.

Shop Amazon - Cyber Monday Deals Week

Learn how to use that camera over at Photography Concentrate. All tutorials are 40% off!


Walmart is a great place for cyber Monday shopping. I already got my deals from them last night!

I hope you have a fun Cyber Monday!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

A Thanksgiving to remember...

We had a loss in our family, but a forgiveness between two siblings. I have to be grateful for that.

Now, on to some other news...

We spend yesterday trying to make our tree work. I lost a part of the stand last year, so I spend an hour putting it in a regular tree stand (yeah I know, like THAT was going to work). So, I finally gave up and drove to Menards and bought a new tree. Which, ended up being huge!

Doesn't look like it in the picture, but it totally takes over room. 

Then, I find out that JCP isn't giving out the globes this year. Now, I have no reason to go out on Black Friday...

Just kidding. I heard there are a lot of people upset about this. They even have a petition out to bring them back. It was a tradition in our house to get up early and get one for our collection. We even stayed and bought from JCP afterwards. I think they made another marketing mistake.

I'm also not thrilled about the whole Black Friday starting on Thanksgiving. It's not Black Friday anymore, people. It's Black Thanksgiving.


So, I need to go now so I can run and get a paper and then put the turkey in the oven so I can watch the parade.

Eat lots and then burn it off tomorrow as you fight for that great deal on that blue sweater you want to get Uncle Fred.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

You Will Be Missed

Today we will say good-bye to my aunt, Lil. She was a spunky lady who was my biggest fan, showing up to every book signing and encouraging me to keep writing. She will be deeply missed.

We never know when we might lose a loved one. Please try not to put off what you can do today!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Making Money Monday-Tis the season

Around this time of year, I try to think of some ways to make extra cash for gifts. I like to keep it to online so I can do it around my other work and not have to worry about babysitters, etc. One of my favorites is affiliate programs like Squidoo . It's easy to sign up and you can be writing your first lens in five minutes!

This is a great way to incorporate online gift shopping with profitable sales-even when you aren't on the computer.

This time of year, I do gift guides. Gift guides bring in readers by using popular keywords that people are searching for when looking for ideas for gifts.

Types of Gift Guides

Product Review – This is the most common slant for shopping-related content. You pick a product and give the pros and cons to purchasing. Though you want the end result to be in favor of the item, you still want to point out any common issues to build trust with your reader and avoid returns down the road.
This or That – Product face-offs are a great way to make affiliate sales.  Point out the features and drawbacks of each to help your shopper make their final decision.
Top 10 – Always popular is the Top 10 list. You can go in so many directions with this one; Top 10 Gifts for Kids, Top 10 Gifts Under $10, etc.
Wish List – If you are not comfortable with writing reviews for products you haven’t personally used, a Wish List Lens may be more up your alley. Write about items you want and why.

Where to Get Ideas

Items Around the House
  • Sale Ads and Christmas Catalogs
  • Online Merchant Websites
  • News

Even if you don't get paid until right before Christmas, at least you can make your money back from what you spend on gifts!

Squidoo sign up here.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Happy Birthday Emily

I can't believe you are already 8! It seems like just yesterday, you were crawling around in your little footie pjs, with your blonde bouncy curls falling in your face. Now, you are so big and so grown up.

I look at you and I see me in you. Then, all of a sudden, I'll see your dad in you. Of course, all the good stuff comes from me.

Remember that next time you get in trouble.

You've taught me so much too. Just recently, you've made it very clear that I can't dance and I have no fashion sense (two posts on their way).

I miss that you aren't a baby anymore, but I treasure the age you are now. I know you won't be little for long and I want to savor every moment and memorise everything about you that makes you you.

So, as I type this, you are running around with your slumber party buddies (first slumber party-I'm SOOO tired!) and having fun. I will try not to cry as I still miss being able to hold you all wrapped up in your little blanket 8 years ago today.

 I know, I'm a big sap...

Now, I'm going to prepare for birthday party number two today-yes, you still get three birthday parties every year. Have a great birthday weekend, you little dork!

Love you,

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

A Perfect Time for Photo Books

Are you thinking about Christmas yet? Have you thought about giving something personal like a photo book? How about a custom planner?

As a photographer, I do a lot of photo books- a lot. I've been given the chance to try out many different photo book companies and while the books are okay, the design programs and prices aren't. Many are hard to be creative and only let you use their templates. Others are just plain confusing!

And then enters Blurb. The pricing is competitive, the quality is excellent and the program to make your photo book is user-friendly while at the same time allowing for the more detailed touch or professional to make minute changes.

Below are screen shots of one of my wedding books.

You can see on the bottom is all the pages. You can choose from their templates, or upload your own. I choose to make my own because of the style of books I do.  Booksmart is the program you download to your computer so that if you don't have Internet, you can still work on your book, or create your own layout.

Blurb Custom Planner's

Right now they just added Planners too!

 Love it!

 This is the perfect time to get started at Blurb for the holidays. These would make a perfect Christmas gifts to clients and family. Love it!

Shipping is super fast unlike other photo books I've ordered from other companies. You have the option of even faster delivery too. Another reason to make a planner or photo book for family this year for Christmas!

I've been with Blurb for probably 5 years now and I wouldn't go elsewhere. My clients love them and I use them for my personal use too.  I would so be their spokeswoman if they would let me. ; )

Until then, I can let you know that if you order now from Blurb you can save 15% off! Use the code FALLTHANKS when checking out.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Eco Smart- Be Smart and Get Some

In our house, we always seem to be dealing with  bugs. Each season brings some kind of bugs. Ants and fleas in the summer,  spiders in the fall, flies in the spring. I hate it! The worse are the fleas. We used to battle with fleas every year.

 Harsh chemicals are not an option. I hate spraying anything around the kids. So what to do? How about a SAFE, all natural Organic Home Pest Control that is plant- based yet really works. EcoSMART is completely safe, non-toxic and all natural. It isn't harmful to people or animals, and it doesn't smell harshly or strongly at all!

I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to review several of EcoSMART's products! The first product that I had the occasion to try was EcoSMART's Organic Insect Repellent.

The smell is wonderful, not only does it NOT smell like chemicals, but it actually smells GOOD! Even though it's getting colder, we still have to worry about bugs outside. This handy travel size is so conveint and I also like to keep a bottle in the car because sometimes we even get fleas in my car.

I also highly recommend EcoSMART's Home Pest Control Spray. Made from organic plant oils, it kills over 100 home pests naturally.  I really like that EcoSMART allows me to get rid of pesky bugs. I spray all the baseboards and window sills inside and out. It really helps with spiders. I HATE spiders! 

Unlike most organic products, EcoSMART products are affordable! They offer a large variety of products to keep your home, yard and garden pest free! They also carry value bundles that allow you to bundle some of the best selling products for a low price to save money!

 Stop using toxic, smelly chemicals to kill bugs and start buying EcoSMART!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Spending (too) much time with the Grand Babies

I love the grand babies. Really, I do.Those cute chubby faces just make me want to kiss them to death. But, I will be the first to admit that they can be a bit of a handful.  Maybe I'm just getting to the point of my life that I can't handle the screaming and fighting for very long.

After a couple of hours with them, I want to stick them out on the doorstep with a FREE-TAKE US, PLEEEEASE! sign stuck on their heads. Did I tell you that I love them?

This last week, they've been around (alot). I guess I had casually mentioned that I would watch all three for my daughter could go out on "date night".

Was I drunk at the time?

So, of course she jumped on that and I found myself babysitting the three little boogers while they went out to eat. Three hours later, the house looked like a tornado swept through it and I aged five years. I found myself listening for the sound of her car pulling in every five minutes. When I finally heard that familiar sound, I think I might have done a cartwheel off the sofa.

Last night, I was thrilled for it to be Friday. All kids gone and time for some me time-well, with the hubby. We planned our evening and were ready to leave, when Jess stopped by with the kids for a minute. She mentioned that the baby wouldn't eat all day and acted funny when she gave him his bottle. I knew something was wrong. I watched his reaction to the bottle and how he gagged when he tried to drink it.

My first thought was that maybe he had something stuck in his throat. We looked and couldn't see anything but he still acted like it bothered him. I told her to take him to the emergency room because even though he could still breathe, if something was stuck there, it might move. She agreed and then asked if I could watch the other two.

Soooo, we entertained the babies again while we waited for them to return. Two hours later, we found out that there was a piece of plastic stuck on the roof of his mouth! Glad we went with our gut feeling.

We packed the kids up and sent them on their way and finally got going. We had a quiet dinner and came home and watched movies. The house sounded so quiet, it almost didn't feel right.

Was I missing those little #$*#*'s ??

Oh brother. Here we go again...

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Election Day

Over the months I've felt so popular. I've never had so much mail come in my name, or so many visitors show up at my door. I felt wanted and needed. I felt like somebody!

What? You say it's because it was election season and I'm the only registered voter in my house?


Here I thought that they love me. They REALLY love me!

Well, I'm depressed now.

I guess there's just one more thing to do...VOTE!

Happy Voting Day!!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Making Money Monday-Success Story

It's Making Money Monday, and this week, I'm featuring a success story!
 Kimberly Gauthier from Keep the Tail Wagging is going to share a bit about herself and her journey.
Please tell us what exactly your business is all about.

Keep the Tail Wagging is an online magazine for dog lovers that shares tips on dog training, behavior, health, nutrition, safety, and new pet products. I've always wanted to create a website about dogs. I saw that so many magazines have an online version and I thought it would be fun to morph my blog into an online magazine that appeals to people like me - people who are nuts about their dogs.

What made you decide to work from home?

We adopted a third dog and it's a lot of work. I want to be a stay at home Fur Mom, spending time with our cool dogs, going on walks and hikes, spoiling them like rotten, and connecting with others who understand. I got the idea when my boyfriend and I took a trip with the dogs. We rented a lake house for several days and it was heaven. Mornings on the beach, afternoons on the computer, evenings watching movies. I realized that I wanted every day to be like that so I got to work

How many jobs/businesses did you try before you found what worked for you?

I started out trying to building a photography business and worked at it in various ways for a few years, before giving up. I have so much respect for photographers today, because of my experience with trying to launch a business. Through this experience, I discovered a love of writing and social networking, which lead me to Keep the Tail Wagging.

How long did it take to earn your first profit?

Not long at all. I started blogging 2009, so when I launched Keep the Tail Wagging in January 2012, I was receiving checks from Google Adsense within a few months. Owning and managing a blog isn't very expensive and I was able to break even pretty quickly and started making a profit within the first 6 months.

What challenges did you have to overcome when you first got started?

The biggest challenge was not knowing what I wanted to do; what message I wanted to deliver. I love dogs, I support dog rescue, I wanted to promote reputable breeders, quality food, inform about health and recalls. And I wanted to do all of this in a fun, honest way. That turned out to be a tall order, but I got there.

There are so many pet blogs out there and I needed to find a way to stand out in a crowded niche. I also was learning as I was going along. It's taken a lot of confidence and patience. When I have moments of frustration and insecurity, I take the dogs for a walk and listen to the Adam Carolla podcast. That's my way of grounding myself so that I can hit the ground running when I return to my computer.

Have you realized your income goals yet?

No, I haven't. But I know that I'm on the right path now to realizing my income goals. I'm connecting with big brands in the pet industry, I have advertisers on my site now, and I have a clear direction and passion for my magazine that I didn't have with my photography business.

What are some of your biggest challenges now?

1) Finding people who will commit to writing for me regularly. Many people express interest and may even submit one article, but people don't realize what a commitment even one time a month is; it's easy for me, because I love writing, but it's not easy for everyone.

2) Rejecting guest post submissions. I get several submissions weekly from people who simply want to park a link on my site. Although I have guest posting guidelines, some people don't read them or simply don't care. It takes a lot of my time to review guest posts only to reject them; it's kind of a bummer, but one of the tasks of a blogger.

3) Explaining to small businesses that I can't promise them customers or traffic. I get emails from people weekly who want me to write about their business, their product, or their rescue group. That's not what Keep the Tail Wagging is about - the site is about sharing dog care tips. Sometimes these requests do fit in line with my blog's mission, but most times they don't and I have to explain that to people. The bonus is that I can invite them to write an article sharing dog care tips to my readers and include a mention of their business/product/rescue group in the bio and people respond well this this.

What do you love most about your business?

I love when someone responds to an article. I love when I'm able to help someone. Whenever I write an article, I always keep in mind "how is this helping?" I also love when an article prompts a back and forth with dog lovers who share their own experience with the topic. It's all about community and I love it.

What would be your advice to someone just getting started?

Be passionate, be patience, and have fun. I love many things, but my passion is our dogs. I feel like my purpose in this life is to honor the love and loyalty of dogs and there's nothing like knowing that I'm on the right path.

Success does happen overnight; we hear about these stories. But I bet if we dug deeper, we'd hear that the person worked for years to gain that "overnight" success, so be patient.

And definitely have fun. When a part of my business isn't fun, if it makes me miserable, then I cut it out. Granted there are things that I like to do more than others, but every part of my business rocks and I'm happy to do it and can't wait to see where it takes me.
Thanks, Kimberly!
If you want to share your success story, contact me with your name and url and why you should be featured! : )

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Stay tuned...

I'm excited to announce a series called Making Money Monday. Every Monday, I will post something work at home related. This could be tips, success stories, freebies, etc.
This Monday, I will feature a success story about someone that I admire and hope to follow in her footsteps!

Check back tomorrow and see who the mystery guest is!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Fall-love it!!

This is my favorite time of the year. I love when the leaves start to turn and the air gets colder. We bake breads and cookies and drink hot apple cider. I love to wear my favorite sweaters and just relax on the couch and watch my favorite movies. 

I so want to try some new recipes I've found on Pinterest this fall. Oh, I so hate you, Pinterest for making me spend hours looking at all the cool things.

This would be fun to serve at Thanksgiving.

I want my bathroom to look like this.

I want to eat this.

See what I mean?
I could go on forever.

 My wedding season is coming to an end as well, so I've finally been able to get back to my writing.

I've been trying to do this for some time now, but it's just been too hard. But, I'm determined to be on it all this fall and winter. I miss my blogging community!