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MIDDLE SCHOOL: The Worst Years of My Life Movie Screening Giveaway- Dallas, Texas

September 16, 2016

Who remembers middle school? Yes, I suspect that many of us over the age of 15 can recall some fond memory and event that happened during that time without thinking too hard (I know I do).

If you live in the Dallas area, I am giving away advanced screening passes for you and your family to see the advanced screening of the Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life movie, Wednesday, October 5, 2016 at AMC NorthPark15. By the way, there are multiple passes!

I am sure that you are familiar with the James Patterson Middle School book series. As a school librarian, I am all too familiar, and of course I have a little James Patterson fan in my own home. I can not wait for my family to experience the movie in person.

The movie is rated PG - It is a Family, Comedy, Live Action, Animated movie.
Movie Information:
In Theaters Friday October 7, 2016
Instagram: @middleschoolmovie
Twitter: @midschoolmovie

To enter, simply follow the instructions via the Rafflecopter below, and as a result the first 20 individual entries will be emailed the awarded screening passes 9/23/2016. The giveaway begins Saturday 9/17/2016 (tomorrow) and ends Friday 9/23/2016. *One winner per household.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
PLEASE NOTE: The first 20 entries will be emailed a link to download your advanced screening passes, so be sure to leave your email address. ALSO, all of the passes are first-come, first-served.

*I was provided the advanced screening passes to facilitate the giveaway*

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alli® & a DIY Exercise Calendar

August 30, 2016

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its alli® weight loss aid. All opinions are mine alone. #alliInMyLife #Before #CollectiveBias
Wow, can I be honest? This is a scary post for me because it is hard to be vulnerable and recognize when it's time to make a change in your life for the better. For too long, I would begin a weight loss journey and it would go well for a time, but then life got in the way. That's not an excuse, but there are situations in everyone's life that can make getting healthy hard (for some). The school year is starting and I am starting a new position, and I want to get in shape and get healthy. My children play sports, and I realize that during practices, I can take that time to do what I need to do for myself - be it walking or running a few laps (no excuses, right?). I can sometimes lack the motivation, and I have to remember to keep going no matter what. I am thankful that this opportunity has come about with alli® weight loss aid. It is giving me the motivation I needed to get back on track.

I am learning so much about alli® weight loss aid during this process and I will discuss that a bit later. So, in honor of my getting healthy, I decided that a DIY exercise schedule to hold myself accountable was in order.

Vinyl Cutter
Vinyl (any color)
Vinyl Transfer Paper
Magnetic Dry Erase Board
Washi Tape (any color or design)
Magnets (any kind)
Fun decorative encouraging words (optional)
Acrylic Paint (optional)
Paint Brush (optional)


1. Using the vinyl cutter software, type the words you want placed into your board.

2. Load vinyl paper into the cutter and print.

3. Using the scissors, cut the words into strips

4. Apply the transfer paper to the strips.

5. Next, temporarily arrange the words on the board to ensure that they are are placed correctly. Believe me when I say it helped. I may OR may not have gotten the days of the week mixed up. (Opps!). No worries, it was an easy fix.

6. Rub the stencil and peel the words onto the transfer paper.

7. Place the first word onto the board and peel off the transfer paper.

8. Using the ruler, roll the Washi tape in a straight line under the first set of words.

9. Place "Sunday" under the first line of the Washi tape.

10.  Repeat steps 6,7 and 8 until you have placed all of the days of the week.

11. Place the last piece of Washi tape vertically closer to the right side of the board.

12. *Optional* paint your inspirational words in your choice of colors.

13. *Optional* using liquid nails or any strong glue, squeeze a small amount into the back of your magnet and affix your inspirational words.

14. Decorate the rest of your board as you desire. My kids decided to write some encouraging words for me (So Sweet!)
Now, lets discuss the alli® weight loss aid. I have seen the product in stores, in the past, and I also know of others who have tried it. What I find interesting is that alli® weight loss aid is the only FDA approved over-the-counter weight loss aid on the market. It works by blocking 25% of the fat you eat from being absorbed by your body *. Being an over-the-counter product is a convenient feature for those that have discussed their health with their doctors. I say convenient, because you do not have to wait at the pharmacy for your prescription, you can just pick it up and head home to begin your journey.

You are probably wondering who can use alli® weight loss aid. Adults over the age of 18 with a BMI>25 can use it (as long as they are not pregnant or breastfeeding), but remember that it should be used with a reduced-calorie and low fat diet*. Thankfully, my husband is an excellent cook (I just need to inform him of his new role - HA! - no seriously).

I have an appointment to consult with with my doctor before I get started. From what I have read, "Most people lose 5-10 pounds in a 6 month period" because for every 5lb-10lb you lose through diet and exercise, alli® weight loss aid can help me to lose 2-3 more*. Sounds like a great motivator to me. My plan is to stay within the calorie and fat targets and start physical activity.
Currently, you can find alli® weight loss aid in the 120ct refill pack at participating retail partners via the myalli.com website. I made my purchase at my local Target while doing some other shopping.
While you are visiting the myalli.com website, be sure to sign up for updates and receive a $10 coupon to help with your purchase. Also, you can find more details when you download the alli® Brand Startup Guide.

What are your motivators to staying healthy?

With that, I just have one thing to say... "I Can Do This!".

Until Next Time!

* alli® (orlistat 60 mg capsules) is for weight loss in overweight adults, 18 years and older, when used along with a reduced-calorie and low-fat diet. Follow label directions. In studies, most people lost 5-10 pounds over 6 months.

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#CuriousCreamery "Belated" Birthday Cake Pops

August 29, 2016

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CuriousCreamery #CollectiveBias
Nothing brings me back to my childhood birthdays like ice cream and cake. The memory of how it tastes, and the sheer nostalgia of it definitely makes me think of happy times. As I have gotten older, I will eat the occasional ice cream and cake at the birthday parties of my children and their friends.For my family, budget plays a part in whether or not we get to enjoy it from time to time, but thankfully, I have found a product that will not only fit into my budget, but allows me to make my very own customized ice cream and cake.

The Curious Creamery is a product that provides consumers with the freedom to customize their ice cream cake the way they like it, making it an activity that the whole family can enjoy together. Listen, anything that allows my kids and my husband to participate and gives us control over flavor, styling and nutrition, is a winner in my book. It helps us to create an understanding of how our food choices impact us. Of course, no one ever thinks of industrial ice cream as “healthier option” (why would you want to), but with this system you can make ice cream with just a third of the fat, calories and saturated fat.  Think about it, The Curious Creamery base contains, no preservatives, no artificial colors or flavors, and there is no gluten. Isn’t that a win/win? Also, what I found interesting was that this product reduces the carbon footprint by 90% while still providing consumers a better-for-you product that includes the most indulgent ingredients. 

Speaking of birthdays, we were on vacation during my son’s birthday, so it is safe to say that he didn’t get to have his cake and ice cream (like he usually does). I have to make it up to him, so I figured this was the perfect opportunity to allow him to share in the fun of making his “belated” birthday cake pops. This time, we are going to take a different approach to our traditional cake pops by using The Curious Creamery Ice Cream Cake Mix - Sweet Cream Flavor.

I wanted to try my hand at making ice cream cake pops, but I wanted the “pops” to be two sided. One side would be the cake pop mixture, while the other side of the “pop” would hold the ice cream. Making traditional cake pops is not a hard process, but I have to be honest, I was afraid these would not turn out the way I expected, but boy was I WRONG! They were so easy and fun to make, and we loved that we were able to control the sweetness that our pops contained. It had the right amount of flavor and texture (with the white chocolate chips I added).
Once the ice cream mixture is ready, filled the other half of the cake pop mold (without the holes) with the mixture until all of the mold spaces are filled 
Cover the mixture with Parchment Paper and freeze for about an hour 
Place the cake mixture side of the mold on top of the ice cream side of the mold and secure in place. Insert the candy sticks into the cake mold holes and place the mold back into the freezer for about 6 hours 
Once the pops are frozen, remove the cake pops from the mold (very carefully) and enjoy as you see fit!
The Curious Creamery is a new product that is on shelves (in the Celebration Aisle) of your local Walmart, however it may not be available in stores. If you do not find it, I encourage you to talk to your local Walmart store manager (you never know). I would also recommend locating the stores where The Curious Creamery Ice Cream Mix are sold in your area using the available store locator. Also, to add to your savings, Click Here to save $2.00 off any 1 Cake Mix from The Curious Creamery.

What special flavors and mix-ins would you add to your Curious Creamery creations?

Until Next Time!

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