Monday, December 31, 2012

Getting Sporty with Crowdtap and Old Navy

I want to introduce you to Deanna.  
She's the world's best babysitter.  
She is cheerful and fun and loves to play with the kids.  
It's always comical to hear them talk about their adventures with her from the night before as they debrief me at breakfast the next morning.
Deanna is a runner and we have seen her run in a handful of local races that Dave has run also.

For all these reasons, it was so fun for me to call Deanna to ask if she could meet me at Old Navy.  Old Navy and Crowdtap sent me two coupons for FREE active wear, so we could each pick a top and a bottom.  

Fortunately, Deanna works just minutes form our Old Navy and we could meet there over her lunch.

It was so much fun!  In the end, we both picked the same top and bottom.  The bright blue jackets and black bottoms.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Sisters and Dresses

On Sunday after church, Emily and I met at Old Navy.  
Crowdtap sent me coupons for me and a friend to each pick a free dress at Old Navy.

Here are some that we tried on:  
 Loved this hot pink belt.
 Emily wasn't too crazy about taking pictures, but she was a good sport.

 I needed a timer and a tripod!
Loved the cobalt blue color - but the skirt felt a little short and the neckline was a little too scooped.
Based on my current obsession with stripes, I loved this before I even tried it on.

It was such fun to have girl time with my best friend.

Which dress would you vote for?  Any guesses?

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Clean Laundry

Perhaps  you'd rather hear my airing out my dirty laundry and giving you the low down on my latest conflict, or rather discussion with the hubbs, but that's not what you will find here.  

On tap today :  my clean laundry with the help of Woolite and Crowdtap.

Crowdtap and Woolite joined forces  I was given the chance to participate in an exclusive Woolite Extra Dark Care sampling
The nitty gritty is that they sent me a bunch of free samples.
I love free and it was fun to share.

Who says laundry can't be fun!

Break it down:
  • Woolite smelled clean and fresh.  It wasn't too over the top, but I do wonder - could they offer a free and clear one that doesn't have perfumes and dyes?
  • I was worried about accidentally having something light slip into the load.  Would this detergent make it darker and ruin it?
  • Can I really tell how well a detergent works by just using a sample or two?  Ideally, I'd like to have two pairs of my favorite jeans (a gal can dream, right?).  For the life of one pair - I'd use Woolite Extra Dark Care.  And for the life of the other I'd use whatever I am using at the time - something I got on a good deal or even my homemade laundry detergent.  I could then intermittently hold comparisons.
So I liked it, but I wonder h ow different it really is from regular detergents.  
I suppose only time will tell.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Crowdtap Does it again! with McCormick Grill Mates.

Awhile back I joined CrowdTap.  
Well, I have recently decided to be more active and I am loving the freebies and goodies that I get to sample.

Recently, I was sent a kit of seasonings and spices to use while grilling.  
The kit included:

  • Grill Mates® Spiced Brandy & Herb Marinade
  • Grill Mates® Slow and Low Memphis Pit BBQ Rub
  • Grill Mates® Montreal Steak Seasoning Blend
  • Grill Mates® Molasses Bacon Seasoning Blend
  • Grill Mates® Brown Sugar Bourbon BBQ Sauce
Just opening the package made my taste buds begin to water!

My favorite has to be the brown sugar and bourbon barbecue sauce.  
I refrain from licking it out of the bottle, but it's delicious on chicken and burgers. 
It's even tasty on grilled veggies.  
And leftover grilled meat that's made into a sandwich.  
I just can't get enough of it.

I am loving all the fresh and local veggies that I can get this time of year.
Lucky for me, the kiddos like them, too!

The Spiced Brandy & Herb Marinate scared me at first, since we aren't 'spicy folk'.  
But the chicken that I marinated and grilled turned out fabulous! 

Thank you to Crowdtap and McCormick Grill Mates!
If you are interested in learning more about Crowdtap you can check it out here:

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Fun at Old Navy!

In my previous post I mentioned that I was a little worried 
because Crowdtap didn't mail me a sample and share they had promised.  
Well, they pulled through this time! 
This time I was selected to go to Old Navy with a handful or friends.  
Our mission was to have fun & try things on and we each got to get a bunch of free goodies.

 Strike a pose!

 I saw this dress and immediately fell in love.  
Loved the stripes, loved the navy and white, loved the fitted bodice.
 It was fun to play dress up.
Kate even found something that fit her belly.
And Lori shows off our free beach bags!  
Summer dresses are so easy.
This also caught me eye - see the stripes? see the colors?  
I can't stop myself from being drawn to navy and stripes.  
It's becoming an issue.

What do you think about the scarf?  I thought the dress needed a little pop of color.  That combined with my less than photogenic hair  created this sassy little number.
Needless to say the girls couldn't stop laughing at me as I modeled this one.

Thanks Crowdtap and Old Navy!  
We love our free sunglasses, flip-flops, beach bags and beach towels!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Madagascar 3 - The movie and Crowdtap.

We got together with some of our favorite people 
to have a party to celebrate the release of Madagascar 3.  
We had fun getting ready and had a fun party as well.  
Here are some of the pictures of our time.

In true wild-life fashion, 
the kids gobbled their tasty pizzas so quickly we forgot to take a picture.

After eating we played some games.  One was pin the tail on
 It would be easier if I could see through this!
 Pin on the Tail...
 Face Masks!

Thanks to CROWDTAP for providing the party kit (printed materials) and for a few of the ideas, like the  animal pizzas!

Can't wait to see the movie!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Excited to Share.... almost.

I have been enjoying participating in Crowdtap and was finally selected for my first Sample Share.  
The plan was that they would send me two coupons - one for me and one for a friend.  
I was so pumped and started trying to figure out who I'd bring shopping.

The sad news... my coupons never came.  
I contacted them on multiple occasions and finally heard back that they couldn't track my coupons or get them to me in time.  

I hope that they can make it right and give me another opportunity soon!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Can you estimate what we learned in school?

So my little miss six year old has a loose tooth.

Actually, it is beyond loose and it's only hanging on by a thread.
Literally - I can see the roots.  
Click, zoom, do what it takes, but there they are.
Two days ago, it was barely loose.

We were running a quick errand this afternoon and from the back seat this is what I overheard:

Clara: Daddy is going to be SO surprised when he sees my tooth!  He's going to come home and say, "WOW!  That's a loose tooth!"  And he will laugh.  Do you think he will laugh?

Silence.  Everyone else was reading or chillaxin'.

Clara:  Well, that's just what I am estimating.  Caleb, do you know what estimating is?

Caleb:  Yes.

Clara:  What is it then?

Caleb:  I don't know.

Clara:  Well, estimating is guessing.  I am just guessing.  I am estimating that Daddy will laugh.

Well, friends, my estimation is that this tooth isn't going to make it another 24 hours.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Easter & dirty fingernails.

On Easter Sunday my mom and stepdad were visiting and my sister and her family came after church for a meal. But first we tried to have seven children (ages 7,6,5,4,3,3,3) hold still and smile at the camera.
The results were well worth the energy spent.

My kids LOVE their time with cousins.
They know when it's been too long between visits and often ask,
"When are we going to Auntie Emi's again?"
It's so dear to watch them interact with one another
and it can drive us nuts all at the same time.
(A saving grace for us mommies is video-time!)

And here's one of our four on Easter.
They clean up nicely if I may say so myself.

Right after these pictures they ran inside to change,
and after our yummy meal they escaped to play outside in the dirt.
The current task: building an underground fort.
Many hands makes light work and filthy fingernails.

What?! That's not how you spent Easter?

Thursday, March 22, 2012

3 year old humor.

Caleb: Do you remember this?
(singing) Pee, pee, pee, pee, PEE!
Lydia: Uh-huh. (She joins his singing)
Caleb: Oh wait! Do you remember this one?
(singing) Poop, poop, poop, poop, poop...

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Monday, March 12, 2012

Would it get things clean?

This weekend
I heard a certain little one ask his father about a bottle in the bathtub:

Daddy, why is this called shampoop?

Friday, March 9, 2012


I overheard this conversation this morning as the kids were getting dressed for the day.

Caleb asks: Lydia, do you like me?
Lydia responds: So-so.
Caleb loudly: Mom! Lydia doesn't like me!
Clara: Don't worry Caleb. She'll get used to you.

.... minutes later I hear Caleb:
"Lydia, you really like me, though.
(then sing-songy)
I like Lydia really, really, really, really, really, really.... so-so."

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Looong Underwear

Conversation today with un-named child:

Mom: Are you wearing underwear?
Child: No, these are called long underwear, so I don't need the others.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Too many pillows and a messy kitchen.

Dave was sick with a terrible cold last week.
Now every time Dave coughs Caleb now asks his daddy, "Do you need to spit?"
Also, Dave uses a couple extra pillows to sleep at night.
Seriously? Is there ANY way this could be comfortable?

This morning I asked Lydia what kind of bagel she would like and she promptly starting pointing and saying "eeny, meeny, miny, moe......"
She even included the second verse, "my mother told me to pick the very best one...."

It is warm here today - like sweatshirt warm.

After breakfast and morning chores, we went to the dairy to get milk and visit the baby cows.
Liam found the youngest one (3 days old!). She was so soft - yes, I even touched it.
He said he was going to come home and write it's number in his notebook to help him remember which one was his favorite.

A couple nights ago I acquired black Converse sneakers for $1.50.
I brought them home gave them a nice soak and scrub.
Today I feel like a cute mama in my 'new' sneaks.

I also went to Granny's - a local Amish-run store.
A police officer came in and asked if anyone had dialed 911 and hung up.
The girls didn't know anything about it and the officer asked to look around just to be sure things were alright. I joked about them making prank calls and all I got in return were blank stares. I'll blame the language barrier. Later the matriarch of the family came in and said she was dialing. 9...1.... then the button got stuck ....1... PANIC! So, she hung up.
I bet that sly gal knows what pranking is.

Before naps, I overheard Caleb saying "cross my heart" to Liam.

At lunch I made the TASTIEST green smoothie.
I even shared.
4 out of 4 kids LOVED it.
If my face fit in there I would lick it.

Now, my kitchen looks like this:

It's almost like a game of I SPY.....
Can you find:
frozen peaches defrosting for dinner
extra spinach for tomorrow's smoothie
Lightening McQueen
whole wheat bread that I bought at Granny's for $1 a loaf
stack of cards just waiting to be opened on my birthday
bag of quinoa

I will stop there.
I have a kitchen to clean up.
And dinner to prep.
And did I mention that we have care group here tonight?
and in 1.5 hours 4 other kids are coming for the afternoon?
My hope is to take them all for a nice sunny walk to the track
because it's sweatshirt warm and I have some new sneaks to show off.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Mondays before 9am.

my oatmeal was ALL THAT - especially since i'm not a fan of oatmeal.
modified from jessica seinfield's Deceptively Delicious..

my right bicep is TIGHT! it even hurts to fully extend it - as in try to make it straight.
at least i know that i have a muscle there.

i am taking 2 ibprofen.

kids did NOT like having oatmeal this morning... weeping and gnashing of teeth at sight of their bowls.

cinnamon sugar to sprinkle on top saved the day.

boys did school and are playing dressup.

girls wanted to do school once they knew dress up was available.
dress up is wonderful motivation.

hauling dressup bin from attic was tough with said bicep.

there's lots of skin and undies around with all this changing of clothes.

liam told caleb that ninjas don't wear undies.