Love, Juliebug: January 2014


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One lucky winner will win a

Keurig Vue V700 Brewing System Value $149 and a bonus pack

Bonus variety box includes:
  • 1 Barista Prima Italian Roast Coffee
  • 1 CafĂ© Escapes Milk Chocolate Hot Cocoa
  • 1 Celestial Seasonings® Sleepytime Herbal Tea
  • 1 Celestial Seasonings® Southern Sweet Iced Tea
  • 1 Gloria Jean’s® Hazelnut Coffee
  • Green Mountain Coffee® Breakfast Blend Travel Mug Coffee
  • 1 Green Mountain Coffee® Nantucket Blend Coffee
  • 1 The Original Donut Shop® Extra Bold Coffee
  • 1 Timothy’s® Columbian Decaf Coffee
  • 1 Tully’s® French Roast Coffee
    *Selections may vary based on supply


Dates:
Feb. 1   12:01am to Feb. 21 11:59pm
All entries are optional,
Continental US resident only

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: Love, Juliebug is not responsible for the awarding of the prize.  If you have any questions about this giveaway, please email the host at nysavingspecials@gmail.com
1. Perfection
Perfection Game. This is NOT a happy memory. This has to be the most stressful game ever made! It was so nerve-racking waiting for the PoP!

There is something about this game that makes me jump out of my skin. I can't put my finger on it - oh wait, it probably has something to do with the fact that you are counting down to a big POP of the board. Yeah, my anxious little self was not a fan of that. I couldn't ever find even five shapes because I was so nervous about the POP at the end. Ah well, something still made me want to play it.

2. Operation
Operation
Again, a matter of my nervous little self. I had consistently shaky hands that always bumped the metal sides making it buzz and vibrate. Did it actually vibrate or did I make that up in my mind?
3. Bed Bugs
1985 Bed Bugs Game By Milton Bradley

Bed Bugs. Really? Those jittery little things were impossible to pick up with those plastic tweezers. Not to mention the fact that it was bed bugs. Ew.

4. Mousetrap
♡♥mousetrap♥♡
This one almost didn't make the list. I loved it. Truly. But, it took a billion years to set up and a billion years for me to actually make it all the way through. Exaggerations sure but not too far off I swear. It was super fun to try until...it wasn't.

5. Monopoly
Break out the board games and have a family game day!

This game has always been a difficult one for me. It involves making decisions and counting money. Those are two of my arch nemeses. Still it was great to play, as long as I was winning. I'm being honest here folks.

What about you? What games did you love to hate?
#sponsored I know there are lots of you in college right now and thought I would share something that would make things a fair bit cheaper for you. One of your biggest costs is probably your books, right? That's where Campus Book Rentals comes in! Here are some of the perks of renting books:

-save 40-90% off of bookstore prices
-free shipping both ways
-can highlight in the textbooks
-flexible renting periods
-we donate to Operation Smile with each textbook rented




Operation Smile is a very special organization. Operation Smile is an international children's medical charity that heals children's smiles, forever changing their lives. Every three minutes a child is born with a cleft. That's a lot of children, and Operation Smile helps so many of them.

Now, there is also a program to help if you have already bought your books. What do you do with them after you are done with a certain class? Yeah, you could just sell them but RentBack is new initiative that allows students to rent the textbooks they own - to other students. This is awesome because it makes them 2-4x more money compared to what they'd make through buyback options! (selling their books back at the end of the semester) Isn't that awesome?!

I hope you think Campus Book Rentals and RentBack is as valuable as I do. If you, check them out let me know what you think.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post, all opinions are 100% mine and were not influenced in any way. 
Today is my Mom's birthday and I want her to know I'm thankful she was born. God made the best decision when He made her my Mom. While it's true that no Mom is perfect, and no kid either, she has always loved me with all she had in her. 


This photo is from about 33 years ago. I think I was four here. I remember this photo shoot vividly. It made me so happy to be sitting on her lap looking at her. To this day, this photo is one of my favorites. 

Happy birthday Mom. I hope you have a wonderful, blessed day. I love you!

A Photo an Hour Link-Up
I saw this link up idea on Meg O's blog last week and decided to join in. So, on Friday I took one photo every hour I was awake. Tedious in nature, I actually had to set alarms to help me remember. Without further adieu, here is a day in my life through photos!

Free Hunger Games T-shirt Design - All Things Thrifty Home Accessories and Decor
{via}

Have I told you I love The Hunger Games? I know there are a lot of strong opinions on this one and I shy away from debates. There is something about this sort of science fiction dystopian future that intrigues me. I thank God we don't live in a world where kids are fighting each other to the death for sport. The love triangle aspect is always interesting to watch although I am also glad to not have that in my real life. 
When Catching Fire came out I heard about our local theater doing a double feature. I love that sort of thing so I asked around and a couple gals wanted to join me. Yay! Unfortunately, we got to the theater a bit late and for the first movie we were stuck in the fifth row from the front. Can you say dizzy? Wow. I didn't realize how the camera bouncing around would make me so woozy close up. Thankfully, we were able to switch to a few rows back for the second one. 
There's something awesome to me about going to an event like that with your girlfriends. But, then again, I have been and always will be a fan girl at heart. I'm not sure why but whatever I like, I like wholeheartedly. That's not a bad thing but I do need a reminder sometimes that life is about more than that one thing.
Back to The Hunger Games though, is anyone else a bit nervous about the last book being made into a movie? Or, in this case, two movies? I am re-reading Mockingjay right now and I have to tell you that I think I might bawl seeing this on screen. I am excited though frustrated that I have to wait so long to see them both. What is it with all this time in between them? Boo on their part. So, I have to wait longer than I'd like. I am looking forward to movie trailers that I know are coming soon. 

How about you? Did you read the books or watch the movies? What are your thoughts?
I have loved the musical Grease ever since I can remember. Though, as a kid I had no idea it had such sexual content in it. That was back when kids were young a whole lot longer than they are now. I had the soundtrack on record as a pre-teen. RECORD. I'll wait if you want to look them up on Wikipedia. Ouch. And, to be honest, I still collect records to this day even though my record player needs a new needle. See, you use a needle to play the music on the round disc. Oh never mind. Let's move along!

One of my top favorite songs from the soundtrack is You're the One that I Want. It's so fun to listen and sing along with.



This one was not highlighted in the movie version but is in the musical theater version more prominently. 
It's Raining on Prom Night is a fun sounding song even though it's got sad lyrics.



Those Magic Changes. Another song that is in the background of the movie version but is in the stage production. I love it.



And then, of course, there's this song. I just love Stockard Channing's version of this one.



To be honest, I am a fan of all the songs in both the movie and stage production. I haven't seen it performed anywhere live yet but I am holding out hope that I will get to some day.

Spring Into Cash Event

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Grand Prize: $1,000 Visa Gift Card

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Do you have a go to meal? You know, one that you tend to make frequently because it's easy. One that you could make blindfolded, like if you were on one of those cooking shows. It doesn't have to be fancy or beautiful even. Heck, it doesn't even have to be healthy, just one that you fall back on.

I have one. It is pork roast. It doesn't sound like mac and cheese but it is as easy and I tend to fall back on it often. I take a pork roast and put it in the crock pot with seasonings and salsa. Then, I cook it for a long time. It falls apart into lovely moist shreds and I then use it for everything. Okay, maybe not everything but lots of things from tacos to pork stew to enchiladas. 

You don't have to use the salsa. Sometimes I replace it with a touch of water or barbecue sauce. You can see where I'm going with this...pulled pork sandwiches, pork potato skins...oh yum. My mouth is watering even typing the possibilities. Sad? Maybe but one taste of this delicious stuff might have you singing the same tune.

So, what is your go to meal? I could always use a few new meals in my planning rotation.

Everyone around me is excited about some sort of major football game. Some superbowl thing. I think it's because we live near Colorado and their team is playing. Haha. As you can clearly it is not my cup of tea. I've never really gotten football. What's the point of it all? No seriously, I'm not trying to be ornery here. I need some sort of crash course!  I get that the team with the most points wins and even that there are four quarters but nothing past that. Can anyone help? I mean, the Superbowl is coming up and I should know something about it, right?
But for those of you that love football I have some fun pins I found for delicious Superbowl food. 
Sloppy Joe Bread Bowls (aka...Neat Joes) Perfect Superbowl food & won't make a mess on your carpet :)
{via}
MOMables.com Buffalo Chicken #Crockpot Meatballs #Recipe #Superbowl Sunday Food
{via}

Barbecue-Ranch Chicken Wonton Cups Recipe...Oh My Gosh!! These are super fast, super simple and definitely Superbowl food!
{via}

This is Lovely: Superbowl Food
{via}

Roasted Jalapeno Popper Dip with Bacon - All the flavor of Poppers in an easy to make dip!
{via}

Don't they all look yummy? I think you can all guess I love cheese and meat but I'm guessing I'm not alone. If you try one make sure you let me know. Happy Superbowl everyone!
Welcome to the Colortime Crafts and Markers Giveaway hosted by A Sensible Momma!

Colortime Crafts and Markers is based on Long Island, NY, and have been known for their wearable art since the 1990's. Known then as the Cotton Warehouse, they hosted Colortime Crafts and Markers parties in their classroom for birthdays, Girl Scouts and camps. After much positive feedback from their customers, they decided to expand. Now kids everywhere can get in on the fun and unleash their creativity! Colortime Crafts and Markers has been is a licensed Girl Scout Vendor for the last 15 years and is a great resource for camps, birthday party, troops and slumber party fun!


This looks like so much fun! I know our five year old would have a blast with this.

One (1) lucky winner will receive one (1) Recycle Tote and three (3) fabric markers! Giveaway ends 2/6/14 at 11:59pm EST and is open to US Residents, 18+. Enter on the easy rafflecopter below:
 
Participating blogs were not compensated to participate in this giveaway and are not responsible for prize fulfillment. If you have any comments or questions, contact Anna at asensiblemomma [at] gmail [dot] com. 
Dear Abby,
You are almost five and a half years old now. You're growing up so quickly. Sometimes I feel like it's too fast but I love it at the same time. You are such a sweet girl. You care about other people's feelings and love learning about God. Being a helper is something that makes you happy. You give your pre-school teacher Ms. Anderson about two hugs before we leave to go home from school. 

You have a laugh that is unforgettable. Both Daddy and I love to make you giggle with tickles. By the way, behind your knees is one of the best places to get you laughing and squirming. Your imagination is getting better by the day. I love listening to you play. You also tell me you have a hundred imaginary friends but you don't know their names. I don't know what is cuter...that you have a hundred imaginary friends or that you actually call them imaginary. 

You still love books which makes me smile. Each night when we read you are quick to ask for just one more book. I'm so impressed with how quickly you learn too. I started working with you a couple weeks ago on a few sight words (the, and, me) and now you recognize them immediately on a page. 

Your hair is still a beautiful shade of blonde. It's sort of dirty blonde now and is getting so long. You have tons of baby hairs growing in around your face so when I put your hair up it looks a bit wild but adorable. You've been really good lately about letting me do your hair.

You got earrings the day after Christmas with Aunt Debbie, Haylee, and me at Claire's in the mall in Arizona. Such a big girl, you didn't even cry. I was worried you wouldn't let me turn them or clean them but, thanks to a talk with Haylee, you have been great!

You have two grown up teeth on your bottom front and you are just now getting your six year molars. You say they don't even hurt but they look so painful. Someone told me you have an advanced mouth and it seems to be true although you didn't get your first tooth until you were nine months old.

I love watching you grow up but yet I love that you are still young enough to cuddle and give kisses all the time. You say mornings and bedtime are your favorite because you get to cuddle with us. I wouldn't trade you for a million dollars sweetie.

Love you forever, Mommy
  Hosted By:  The Binder Ladies

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 Enter the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win! Giveaway ends on 2/1 @ 11:59 pm PST.
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*The participating bloggers were not compensated for this post, nor are they responsible for prize shipment.  Winner will have 24 hours to respond after being contacted via email.  The Binder Ladies is responsible for prize shipment.   If you have any questions, please contact thebinderladies@gmail.com



1. Top 3 favorite kinds of food
I have many favorite foods. If I have to narrow it down I would say Mexican, Italian, and Indian. Mmm.

2. First 3 things you do in the morning
Check the time. Try to get Abby to sleep longer. Open the blinds.

3. Last 3 things you do at night
Blog. Kiss my hubby. Pray.

4. 3 TV shows you NEVER miss
Never is a big word but I try not to miss these shows. Vampire Diaries, Top Chef, and The Originals.

5. 3 places you want to visit
I'd have to say Ireland, France, and Africa. 

6. 3 people you can always count on
Again, always is a big word but typically I'd say my family, friends, and God. 

For some reason there is an ongoing battle with how we should be as Moms. Never mind that each child and each parent are completely different. Is it not enough that I question everything I do? Now I have other people judging me as well.

The question was posed to me recently inquiring whether I was the type of Mom who needs a break from her kids or not. I was stumped. The "type of Mom"? Surely every mother needs a break from time to time. I know I do. Then, I started to wonder...am I wrong? Do I suck for not being super mom? The answer politely is no.

I truly believe that every Mom needs a break. Whether they get one or not is another thing. There is this notion going around Mom-Ville that sounds like this "I am their Mom. I should do everything perfectly and never need help. I should never lose my cool. It is my job. If I don't feel this way there is something wrong with me. What if I screw up this Mom thing?" I have this same tape running through my mind, trust me I do.

The thing is these thoughts are lies. Why? Well, let me share.

1. Your kids will be better off if they have a mom that takes a bit of time for herself now and again. Heck, even for a warm bubble bath and a glass of herbal tea. Man, that sounds awesome!

2. We are not alone in this parenting thing. Whether it is your spouse, family, or friends I pray that you have people to come up alongside you in this parenting business. It takes a village. It really does.

3. We are not perfect. We are human, we stress. We react badly to situations. The point I am trying to make here is we will never be able to do everything perfectly. We need to let ourselves off the hook a bit more.

4. When you live in the land of "should-haves" and "what ifs" you will go crazy. Honestly, just seek to do the best you can in the moment and wait for the next moment to arrive. Don't look back too far and don't crane your neck trying to look forward.


It doesn't matter if it's a girl's night out, a lunch, or a cup of coffee - take a break every once in a while. You deserve it!


Sponsored by:  Bowflex Boost 
Hosted by:  Momma Lew's Blog 
Co-Hosted by:  Natural Hair Latina WEMAKE7 and Mom Elite

As the new year is in full swing, Bowflex wants to help you to stay on track with their resolutions to lose weight and get fit this year!  Their new Bowflex Boost makes it easier than ever to stay motivated and active! Read Momma Lew's full review here to find out all about this great new fitness product!

I don't know about you but I could definitely use help staying on track with my fitness goals. I don't want to be a body builder but being in the best shape for me would be great!

How would you like to win your own Bowflex Boost?  One lucky reader will win their own, ARV: $49.99 + free app.  To enter, follow the steps in the rafflecopter below. Giveaway is open to US Residents, 18+, one entry per household.  Ends 1/30 at 11:59pm EST.  


Good luck & thank you for entering! 

Momma Lew and this blog are not responsible for prize shipment.  This blog received no compensation for this review and giveaway. 



1/12/14: I just got a "thank you" for breakfast from Abby. I replied that I was glad she liked it and she said "yeah, that's because you're a good Momma."

1/13/14: Abby is so funny! She was washing her hands and face after lunch and Tom asked her to hurry up. She replied, "You can't rush a raspberry!" lol Thank you Caillou.

Kindle Fire Giveaway
Sign ups end Friday 1/31/14 Tentative Event Dates 2/3/14 – 2/17/14 at 11:59pm

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Every year of Abby's childhood brings new joys and new challenges. The joys are precious and the challenges can be intense. We've waded through colic, tantrums, and even the "why" stage. Now, we are at the stages of pushing boundaries and "I'm just kidding" when we all know she was trying to slip a fib by. What can I say? Being a parent is not dull

Nobody told me that five year old girls are very emotional. It shouldn't surprise me considering I am a girl but it does. She starts crying over the fact that I put the clothes in the washing machine without her help. Or, she whines because it's not snack time yet. She even thinks she can run up to her room in a huff and slam her door. "Wrong, little girl. You are not fifteen." I want to say.

In the depth of the day it's easy to become frustrated. It's easy to feel alone and like I'm not cut out for this job. But then, I have moments of clarity. I see fellow moms expressing the same frustrations. Different children, different moms, same struggles. It reminds me, in a not so subtle way, just how important it is to talk about our life journey with others. There's something powerful in the sharing of battle scars. There's something precious and encouraging in learning you are not alone.

The moments when I find myself frustrated and feeling like the worst mom in the world are the moments I need to remember the following, I am called to this motherhood business. I'm not just here because the wind blew me here. And, that means something. 

Motherhood - Great inspiration on this beautiful labor of love in this post!



I saw this on one of my favorite blogs Michelle's Desk sometime a couple years ago and borrowed it then. So when I saw it again yesterday I decided I wanted to do it again! I've tagged some past posts in almost each one so you can look back with me. 
If you really knew me... 
-you'd know there are some foods I cannot stand the texture of like Tapioca. Certain textures make me gag.
-you'd know I love stationary and writing letters "old school".
-you'd know I love to sing and write song lyrics. I have a billion folders and notebooks of songs I wrote when I was younger.
-you'd know crafting is something I enjoy even though I have to fight to let go of my perfectionist tendencies while doing so.
-you'd know I've been married for 17 years and think my husband is awesome.
-you'd know watching reality shows does not interest me with the exception of almost any cooking competition show and a few others. Love me some Top Chef.
-you'd know I won a trip from Fox Broadcasting to NYC in 2012 and am regularly touted by my friends and family as the luckiest person. I win things. Lots of them. 
-you'd know I have PCOS and struggled with infertility for years before conceiving our little girl with help from a specialist. 
We love making our own pizza in this house. I have tried many dough and sauce recipes but these are my absolute faves. I use them all the time. I don't know where the crust is from so if you recognize the recipe please let me know!The sauce is from Skinny Taste. It is simple and delicious. I use it for everything. Everything. If you try them out, let me know what you think.
Easy Pizza Crust

1 T. active dry yeast
1 cup warm water
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
2 T. olive oil
2 1/2 c. flour

Dissolve yeast in water. Add the rest of the ingredients. Knead into a smooth dough. Roll out and press down onto the pan. Add sauce and toppings.
Bake at 450 for 12-15 minutes.Dough can be frozen and used later as well.

Quick Marinara Sauce | Skinnytaste
{via Skinny Taste}

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