Friday, March 30, 2012

The Birthday Chronicle Review and Giveaway

I am a big history person. I have several history concentrations in college and loved them all. I think it ties into my sentimentality as well! And that is why the Birthday Chronicle is so neat to me! Available through Because I Tried It, which has Personalized Gifts for Anyone, Anytime, the Birthday Chronicle is a personalized (8 1/2 x 11) mini-newspaper front page, going back as far as January 1, 1900 through December 31, 2011.  Your Birthday Chronicle includes a greeting, by name, from the then-President of the United States, plus newspaper headlines and stories from the year of your birth. 

I chose to have one made up for baby E. Since he was only born last year, the headlines and such aren't as eye opening or mind boggling as it would be with someone born 50 years ago, but it was still totally awesome! The Birthday Chronicle comes as a pdf file that you print yourself on regular 8.5 x 11 paper. Mine printed out just fine. I am going to put this in E's baby book and hopefully he will enjoy looking at it when he is older!

Because I Tried It  offers free items often. To learn about them, you can connect with Because I Tried It in  any of the following ways:
 Would you like to win your own Birthday Chronicle? Entering is easy! Just fill out the Rafflcopter from below. I am giving away TWO copies, and Bloggers are not eligible to win.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*I received a product for review. No other compensation was given*

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Menu Plan... Monday? - Week of 3/26/12

Happy spring!!! It is officially the busy season around here. Between birthdays, Easter activities, spring activites and just oging outside more... weekends are packed and with a baby, recovery is harder! This week's menu plan got delayed and going to the grocery store this week is as well. I was going to try to get a lot done at home today, but the baby is extra clingy and whiny so, so far... nothing much has happened! I think he is teething again :(

Monday: leftovers from the weekend
Tuesday:  Slow cooker pasta sauce chicken (I needed something quick - I added garlic and spices.)
Wednesday: chicken pot pie and "Bisquick pie" from the freezer (no clue what Bisquick pie is!)
Thursday: leftover pasta sauce chicken
 Friday: chicken fingers

Ok a boring week!

For more menus, visit OrgJunkie!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Hurry - New Pampers Gifts to Grow Code Expires Soon!

There is a new Pampers Gifts to Grow Code available today, 3/23, only! It expires at 11:59 p.m. CT
Use code  FB3PD23GXDAYS12

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Radical Review Wednesday: Teddy Grahams Soft Paws

Yup another new product I just had to try! I saw these Soft Paws by Teddy Grahams on the shelf (on sale, no coupon) and they looked really interesting. Being individually wrapped, they seemed more like a granola bar than a cookie, even though they were on the shelf with the cookies.

Teddy Graham Soft Paws come in two flavors - Oatmeal Raisin and Apple Cinnamon. I tried Apple Cinnamon, since Jeff does not like raisins. These cookies were all right.They are small, but they are thick. There was also a little bit of a dark line in them - like they weren't fully baked. The taste was mild.

I did like that  8 come in in a package, rather than 6 or 5 bars that come in a lot of granola bar packages.

I would buy these again, if they were on sale and I had a coupon!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Free Rita's Italian Ice Today


And not only is the first day of spring one of my favorite days of the year, it is the also the day that Rita's Ice gives away a FREE regular sized Italian ice! Cannot wait until Jeff comes home from work so we can go!

 And don't forget to sign up for the Rita's Birthday Club - you get a buy one get one free coupon!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Save $5 on the Muppets Wocka Wock Value Pack

The Muppets movie releases on DVD and Blu-Ray this Tuesday March 20th. You have NO idea how excited Jeff is about this!!

If you re a Disney Rewards member, you can print a coupon for $5 off the Wocka Wocka Value Pack. It includes the digital DVD, Blu-Ray disc and a digital copy of the soundtrack. Limit 2 prints per computer, and the coupon expires 3/25. This will be great to pair with a sale - and some retailers off a gift with purchase too!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Dr. Oetker Pizza Ristorante Review

Apologies for the quick review with no pictures from me... I was told BzzAgent was not going to give you credit for blog posts anymore, so I didn't eat it thinking about the blog. Then when I logged on today, the last day of the campaign, I saw there was a spot for a blog review! So here you go!

Jeff and I tried these two pizzas:
  • Quattro Formaggi: 4 premium cheeses: edam, mozzarella, emmental, blue cheese, basil seasoning
  • Speciale: Pepperoni, cooked ham, spicy herbs
Both were very good and enough for two people. However, one pizza would not be enough for three. The Speciale was good, crisp, and I enjoyed having two types of meat. The toppings were plenty, but it wasn't spicy (as the descriptions mentions spicy herbs). The quattro formaggi was delicious. The blue cheese was runny but gave it a bit of a bite that you don't usually find on a frozen pizza.

Pizza Ristorante comes in six varieties, and you can find in in most supermarkets. For more information, visit or

*As a member of BzzAgent, I received 2 free product coupons. No other compensation was received, and all thoughts and opinions are my own*

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Radical Review Wednesday: belVita Breakfast Biscuits

When I first the saw the commercial for belVita breakfast biscuits from Nabisco, I knew I had to try them. Cookies for breakfast? Sign me up!! And I am glad I tried them. I tried the Apple Cinnamon and Golden Oat flavors.

Apple Cinnamon belVita was delicious! It tasted like a thin oatmeal cookie, with bits of real dried apples in it. (If you look closely at my pictures, you might just see that apple). My husband, who is NOT a dried fruit fan, barely noticed the apple bits.Which stinks because that meant I had to share them with him!!

Golden Oat belVita was pretty good. It is defintely more cracker-like than the apple cinnamon and tastes and feels a bit more healthier. They are still very tasty and a nice alternative to the usual breakfast foods.

I really don;t have much negative to say about belVita breakfast biscuits. They are a good size and 4 to pack makes you think you are indulging. They are tasty and healthy.  BTW at my grocery store they are sold with the cookies... that should tell you something!!

*Disclaimer: I bought these myself to try and review*

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Crunch Time (Cozy Mystery Challenge 2012: Book 2)

E and I were going to a class at the library, so I thought I'd stop quickly beforehand and pick up my next cozy mystery challenge book. Well, E decided not to cooperate, and so I was grateful to see that the next book in one of my most favorite series was available. I could quickly grab it and go down to the children's section before he started pitching a fit!

Crunch Time by Diane Mott Davidson

DescriptionColorado caterer Goldy Schulz cooks up big trouble as she tries to help her longtime friend and fellow chef Yolanda Garcia. When the rental house shared by Yolanda and her irrepressible aunt Ferdinanda is destroyed by arson, the pair move in with cop-turned-PI Ernest McLeod. But then Ernest is shot dead and his house is set on fire, nearly killing Goldy, Yolanda, Ferdinanda, and nine beagle puppies that Ernest had recently rescued from a puppy mill.

Concerned for her friends, Goldy invites them to stay with her while the sheriff’s department investigates. Yet even Goldy’s house isn’t safe, and after a failed break-in by an unknown intruder a cop is sent to keep an eye on things. Then a second body is found.

Swapping her chef’s hat for a sleuthing cap, the intrepid Goldy steps up the investigation. But she’s got to move fast. It’s crunch time to close in on a killer, before he can close in on her. (via amazon)

Review:  This is one of my favorite book series. I love culinary mysteries, and I love stories where the setting is important, and this series catches it all. While it wasn't my favorite book in the series, it was still a jam packed action ride.

This book was full of new and returning characters, and sometimes it was hard to keep them all straight. I love the character of Goldy Schultz and the way she can get people to talk (usually baked goods are involved!), and in this book she is at her best. However, two newer characters, Yolanda and her great Aunt Ferdinanda were kind of annoying. Having Ferdinanda in a wheelchair seemed a bit gimmicky.

There are a lot of storylines going on at once so it got a bit chaotic at times. Ernest had several clients when he was killed, so each of their storylines are developed along with the main "whodunit" mystery. There are also a few other sidelines and characters thrown in for good measure.

I did like how so much of Crunch Time, like the other books,  depended on the mountain setting. Some of the most pivotal parts of the story couldn't happen in, say, the wetlands. Davidson is very good at putting the reader right with Goldy in her big ole catering van tooling around Aspen Meadows.

While this wasn't the best of the series, I do highly recommend them. Start with the first book Catering to Nobody.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Menu Plan Monday - Week of 3/12/12

Recap from last week:
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins - I used the whole can of pumpkin so they were super moist and sticky but delicious!
Ritz Cracker Crust Quiche (adapted from this recipe) - The crust was waaaay too buttery. Delicious but I'd cut the butter in half next time.
I used an entirely different pot pie recipe that I might tweak and post later. I probably won't though lol I also made a chicken pasta salad, Thursday when it was 70 degrees and pot pie was not appealing! It was one of those throw things in and see how it tastes, and that actually turned out well!!

This week:
Monday: Italian marinated chicken
Tuesday:  Slow cooker pasta sauce chicken
Wednesday: leftovers
Thursday: Oven fried pork chops and garlic mashed potatoes
 Friday: leftovers

I usually try not to cook on the weekends, but since it is St. Patrick's day, and I am a sucker for theme cooking (and E's last "first" holiday), I am going to make slow cooker baked potato soup, and I am also making a secret dessert, I don't want to say in case Jeff reads this!

For more menus, visit OrgJunkie!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

11 Months Already!

I can't believe that my baby boy is 11 months!!!

forever moving = blurry pictures!

He is finally teething steadily again... 2 teeth are poking through and 2 more are fighting their way out. That means more restless nights for baby sleepless nights for mommy! He is still working on building up the courage to walk on his own, but he is standing more. We are also working on the sippy cup. Slowly but surely. He babbles a lot and says mom and bye bye. He is also clapping! In less than a month he will be a year old... insane.

climbing in his toy box and digging through it is his latest trick!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Lindt Gold Bunny Day

Today is Lindt Gold Bunny  Day!! To celebrate, each Lindt chocolate store will be giving away a free milk chocolate Lindt bunny to the first 500 customers who walk in the doror. No store? The first 500 who place an order on the Lindt chocolate site will get a free bunny too! If you are a rewards member, you can pick up your free piece of chocolate today too! YUM!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Blogging from A to Z in April

I just signed up for my very first blogging challenge. Yay! It is the Blogging from A to Z Challenge. What is it? From Arlee Bird, who created this challenge:    It all began with my post from Saturday March 27, 2010 when I set forth a challenge to all bloggers for the month of April.   Can you post every day except Sundays during this month?  And to up the bar, can you blog thematically from A to Z?
       Most of the time if you subtract Sundays from April, you then have 26 days--one day for each letter of the alphabet.  When April 1st lands on a Sunday you begin on that day which will be the only Sunday you would post during that month's challenge. 

        Using this premise, you would start beginning April First with a topic themed on something with the letterA, then on April second another topic with the letter B as the theme, and so on until you finish on April thirtieth with the theme based on the letter Z.  It doesn't even have to be a word--it can be a proper noun, the letter used as a symbol, or the letter itself.  The theme of the day is the letter scheduled for that day.
Sounds like fun, right? As you might have guessed from the banner above, I will be doing a disney theme!! I will include the disclaimer that every post might not be about Disney but most of them will be. Hopefully you will learn something or at least be entertained by them!

If you are interested in signing up for the Blogging From A to Z Challenge, just click here to join!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Menu Plan Monday - Week of 3/5/12

We are all still sick. I am much worse, and the poor baby's face is all crusty with snot :( He is also teething (2 more are poking out!) so it has been miserable around here. Therefore...  comfort food is the course of the week!

Monday: chicken fingers

Tuesday:  Ritz Cracker Crust Quiche (adapted from this recipe)

Wednesday: leftovers
Thursday: Chicken  Pot Pie (adapted from this recipe)
Friday: something from the freezer

Dessert will be brownies, which I made yesterday from a mix!
Breakfast will be Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

For more menus, visit OrgJunkie!

Saturday, March 3, 2012


Moved into size 12 mo shirts but still fits into size 6 mo pants...`

Welcome to Sickville, population 3!!! Jeff came home from work Tuesday with a sore throat.... by morning, it was a full fledged cold. He called out Thursday and spent the whole day lying and sleeping on the couch, poor guy! :(  He is on the mend today... Meanwhile, my throat started hurting on Thursday, and today it is in so much pain! I have a slight cold too, as does baby E. A lot of sneezing and nose running from his tiny baby nose!

With all of this lazing about, I have actually started to plan next week's menu. Yes, I must be sick because I am looking forward to cooking this week ?!?! I need to use up some things, so I am thinking chicken pot pie and quiche. I have a hankering for muffins, too, I think I'll make muffins this week and maybe scones next week.

Blog-wise I am working on getting more reviews and giveaways up! Since I took such a long break, I feel like I ma starting all over again almost! But I promise I will have some good stuff up soon. Until then, you can still enter to win a 2 night stay in Estes Park CO!

In exciting news, E. is finally cutting his next 2 teeth! He has been teething on and off since he got his first 2 teeth on Oct 26th. This morning I noticed 2 off to the side that are almost all the way through. So exciting! It has also been a blast to hear how his speech is developing, from the sounds that sound almost like words to now, when he says mama clearly and knows who I am! He is pretty good with saying dada too. and he LOVES to sing! So cute. Hopefully someday I'll be able to get it on video.

Have a great weekend!!!

shopping time!!!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Facebook Freebies for you and your baby

Today, on the Baby Mum-Mum Facebook page they will be giving out "free coupons" so hopefully they are for free products or high value ones. E. LOVES these things - they taste like flavored cardboard to me but hey, as long as he is happy lol! They were actually the first non-puree food he had.

If you're looking for a treat for yourself, today on their Facebook page, Ghirardelli is giving away bars of their new chocolate creation, which is a mystery right now! Mmmmmm!! Wonder what it could be?

Unfortunately, there is no time when either of these are going live, so keep checking back! Good luck :)