Tag: giveaway

Friday Favorites- Little Blueberryy Giveaway

Happy Friday! You know by now I only share the things I truly love and use in my own life with you, right? That’s what my Friday Favorites segments are all about. Today, I am sharing my new favorite jewelry designer- Brooke Michaels! She is the owner and designer at Little Blueberryy. Brooke herself is as energetic and fashionable as her original creations! She is the sole designer, creator, marketer and brand originator. She is an entrepreneur on the go and she creates stylish pieces to fit an energetic lifestyle.

Brooke began designing jewelry as a hobby when she was just 13 years old. Being creative just comes natural to Brooke, which is easy to see in her t-shirt and jewelry designs. She also creates jewelry with crystals, dream catchers and original wall art. When she graduated from college and returned home she realized that building a business is something she has to do fulfill her creative passions.

What I love most is that Little Bluberryy designs are simple statement pieces that provide fashion on the go.  The adjustable metal bracelets are perfect to wear to the gym, while chasing toddlers, to the grocery store, or for a night out with friends. Using pure metals in copper, brass and aluminum affords comfortable style and intrinsic health benefits. Every piece is uniquely hand crafted and stamped and packaged by Brooke personally. You can read more about the benefits of each metal on her Etsy page.

All of the metals used in the metal bracelets are sourced in the U.S.A. and are completely customizable. If you want a special birth date, or coordinates of a special location, or you want a personal mantra stamped into the metal for all of eternity Brooke can do that! Kid sizes are also available! How cute would it be to get a mommy and me matching set customized with their birth date, or your affectionate pet names for each other? She also crafts hand stamped necklaces that are super trendy right now. You can have your child’s name, or special poetic phrase you both love stamped onto a keepsake you will wear for a very long time!

Little Blueberryy designs also offers gorgeous crystal jewelry to suit every mood. Maybe you need to relax, or just ward of negative vibes, Brooke has a crystal for that! You can find her beautiful creations on the Little Blueberryy website.

As always I love to shop a brand with a love for charitable giving. Brooke’s pet passion is helping animals. She creates unique dog tags and donates 10% of every purchase to the ASPCA, an organization that advocates for animal welfare and adopting pets into good homes. I love that you can shop Little Blueberryy for such unique personalized gifts for every member of your household!

It wouldn’t be a Friday Favorites giveaway if I wasn’t giving away one of my favorite things right?! Out of all of Brooke’s designs my most favorite is the customizable metal bracelets! It is such an affordable way to custom design a gift for a friend, yourself,  your mom, a co-worker or a favorite teacher. It’s a really easy go-to gift that you can be a part of designing. You can stack different metals for a unique look and to soak up all the healing properties at once.

Not that you need an excuse to shop with Brooke, but Mother’s Day is right around the corner! What mom wouldn’t love to wear something customized just for her? Well here is your chance to win ONE customized bracelet in a metal of your choice! Pick from pure copper, brass or aluminum and you pick what you’d like Brooke to hand stamp! She does her magic and ships it off to you!! Easy peasy!! She ships all over the country, so you don’t have to worry about where you live! What are you waiting for? Go enter!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure notice: This post contains affiliate links. I make a small commission if you purchase through the Amazon links below for the products pictured. All social media links are safe and free to use.

If you sign up to follow Little Blueberryy’s newsletter you can keep up with sales alerts and receive 10% off of your very first order. Through the month of April all Birds Nest necklaces are 10% off! These are gorgeous symbols of family and strength- perfect for your mom or grandmother, or other favorite mom.

LB on Instagram Facebook Shop


Photo credit: All photos contained in this post belong to Brooke Michaels of Little Blueberryy Designs.

The Whatever Mom is a twin mom learning to let go of perfection. She shares her real life struggles with parenting through her blog and contributes her time and talents as a writer to Hudson Valley Parent and Masshole Mommy. When she isn’t writing you can find her chugging coffee, folding laundry and not judging other parents. Don’t forget to subscribe via email so you never miss a blog post again! You can also find her work featured on Mamapedia 

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Friday Favorites – Zen Coloring Set Flash Giveaway

Today I had to pick my daughter up from school. She has had a raspy voice and sore throat for days. No fever, nothing extra. Just plain feeling crummy. So when she finally had enough and went to the nurse because her throat was just too sore I caved and let her come home.

I don’t want to start a trend of every time I visit the nurse I get to go home, so right now she is not allowed to watch TV or play her video games. She has to stay in bed, in her jammies and rest. Awhile ago I picked up some zen kiddie coloring books with ocean scenes. My girls love them! My little lovey asked if I would sit with her in her bed and color with her. Sure. Why not? My agenda for this day is already shot.

Coloring books are fun, unless you have two perfectionists fighting for elbow room on a tiny lap tray. I remember, I have my own stash of coloring books! I pull them out now and then when the girls are working on art projects and I want something of my own to color. No really, I do! So, guess what? Ya’ll get a flash giveaway of an awesome coloring book and markers set!

Here’s a sneak peek of what’s inside:

You have to be a fan of my Facebook page to get in on this action! So head on over to The Whatever Mom to like the page and share, and tag 3 friends you think could use a little zen time! WINNER ANNOUNCED TOMORROW 1/7/17 ON FACEBOOK.

After the last few weeks of life being total chaos, it was nice to slow down and enjoy some quiet time. Even if it wasn’t by myself.


The Whatever Mom is a twin mom learning to let go of perfection. She shares her real life struggles with parenting through her blog and contributes her time and talents as a writer to Hudson Valley Parent and Masshole Mommy. When she isn’t writing you can find her chugging coffee, folding laundry and not judging other parents. Don’t forget to subscribe via email so you never miss a blog post again! You can also find her work featured on Mamapedia 

mamapedia-badge  HVP Individual Badge   Mom blog badge   Mass Hole Mommy blog-lovin

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Friday Favorites – Walking With Leslie GIVEAWAY

Photo courtesy of Anchor Bay Entertainment.

 

HAPPY FRIDAY!! IT’S FINALLY FRIDAY!! WOO HOO!!

I don’t know about you, but I have just had the most craptastic week! Really, it was fantastically crappy in so many ways. Except TODAY! Today is gonna be a good day I can already tell! I am walking with my girl Leslie Sansone AND I’m giving away a little something to put us in a good mood!

I always find getting out for a walk clears my mind and gets rid of some stress. But here in the North East it is so cold and gray in the morning. It is hard to get motivated to walk when it is this cold. Back in the Spring I shared with you my love of Leslie and her quick and easy walking work outs. I just pop in a DVD, or pull up a workout on Youtube and power walk right in my living room! No crazy choreography, no weird angles to twist myself into, just walking! The best part is I really feel like I had a WORKOUT! The kind that leaves ya sweaty and with a pep in your step. You aren’t just walking front to back and marching in place. She throws in some classic aerobic moves like side steps, kick backs, even some jogging.

Yes, I could go to the gym to walk- but I feel like a drone on the treadmill plugged into the TV. Plus, I have to hope my kids aren’t tearing up the day care room. Last month I made a couple of sad attempts at joining some new classes, which only reminded me how out of shape I really am. (It’s totally normal to need the Chiropractor after a work out right?). Following along with Leslie makes me feel just as energized as any class. I really miss taking my high intensity aerobics classes! So, guess what I just got my hands on? A couple of new Leslie Sansone HIIT DVD’s! HIIT Stands for High Intensity Interval Training. You exercise in short bursts of “all out” effort and then recover. Essentially, you walk for less time, but burn as many calories as a longer walk session. Plus, the music she picks for these DVDs is so upbeat! It makes rolling out of bed before day light almost worth it!

Sweat Session 1: Walk to the Hits with All Time Favorites. This includes some 50’s hits like The Twist and songs from The Temptations, but amped up. I felt a little out of shape trying to keep up, but I could still walk without limping after and that is gold once you turn 40!

Sweat Session 2: Walk to the Hits Radio Remixes. This includes remix versions of Let’s Get Loud and Move It, Move It (my kids love this one!). Another great work out that left me feeling sweaty, yet energized! I loved the play list much better (and it was 8 minutes shorter than session 1).

If you haven’t tried walking with Leslie Sansone yet you are missing out! It’s literally like having a walk party right in your living room! Guess what?! Now you can win ALL THREE HIIT DVD’s and have Leslie to yourself! Woo hoo!! Walk party with the kids, or invite some moms over and let the kids play while you grab some miles! Winner will be announced in my next Friday Favorites Segment on 12/16/16.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 

 


This post contains affiliate links to Amazon which means I earn a small commission if you purchase using these links. There is no difference in price if you use the links in this post. I did not receive financial compensation for this post. In exchange for my enthusiastic and honest review, I received additional DVDs promoted by Anchor Bay Entertainment. #Amazon #Affiliates #Ad 

 

The Whatever Mom is a twin mom learning to let go of perfection. She shares her real life struggles with parenting through her blog and contributes her time and talents as a writer to Hudson Valley Parent and Masshole Mommy. When she isn’t writing you can find her chugging coffee, folding laundry and not judging other parents. Don’t forget to subscribe via email so you never miss a blog post again! You can also find her work featured on Mamapedia 

mamapedia-badge  HVP Individual Badge   Mom blog badge   Mass Hole Mommy blog-lovin

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Friday Favorites- Limelight by Alcone {Giveaway}

I’ve already shared with you my favorite Summer Sun Skin Care items I use all summer long. But today I am excited to share with you some new products I’ve found through LimeLight by Alcone. I am always on the hunt for great makeup and skin care products. I have found a line that I truly love and look forward to using!

I met with my friend Tenaya who is now a Beauty Guide for LimeLight by Alcone. She treated me to a make over with skin care and make up products that are all manufactured with your health and the health of the planet in mind. I was excited to spend the day outside on her deck enjoying the beautiful day kid free, and getting some extra pampering.

Alcone Chemical Free

The first thing I tried is the Dream Clean set which is a basic starter collection. I could feel my skin immediately hydrate and it felt really clean. My skin felt smooth after using all of the products which is key for me. I loved the feel of the masque of zen. All of these products are plant based and smell amazing.

Alcone set

Next up Tenaya matched me up with a foundation color. I will say this was the most perfectly smooth foundation I have ever tried. Not only did it go on easily but it made my skin absolutely flawless- no redness, no freckles it was all covered. I am not a fan of foundations that have a strong “plastic” smell. This cream foundation had none of that. It felt light and was totally fragrance free.

Alcone foundation

I learned that this makeup line is used by Hollywood makeup artists. In fact, the family owned company has been the number one makeup supplier for generations. Adding in a plant based skin care line and removing non essential chemicals from the makeup formula is what gives this company it’s modern edge.

The Alcone product I am most in love with right now is the Make-Off make up remover cloth. It is gentle enough to use every day and will take off your make up in one swipe. With the summer heat here I’ve started carrying these little prepackaged cloths in my bag and even in my beach cooler. As soon as I am done with a day of sun with the kids I pull out one of these cloths. The rosewater is refreshing and hydrating and I can feel my hot skin start to calm. Super convenient!

Alcone MakeOff Cloth

All of the Alcone products come with a 100% happiness guarantee, so if you don’t love your products you get your money back. Oh I almost forgot to share with you the best part about the packaging! Not only is it gorgeous, but it is 100% recyclable. The color pallets and the foundation pallets all pop out of the cardboard case; all of which can be tossed into your recycle bin. Each one is small enough to carry in your purse or add to your makeup bag!

Alcone package

If you want to learn more about LimeLight by Alcone stop by Tenaya’s personal shopping site, or ask to join her exclusive PRIVATE Facebook group. You can ask any questions there and get all the details on new products and upcoming sales promos. If you are local and would like to have your own make over and foundation color match you can schedule one with Tenaya through her group.

Alcone Tenaya

* * * *  GIVEAWAY TIME * * * * *

 

Alcone giveaway

Three lucky winners are going to get a $25.00 gift certificate to shop with!! How exciting is that? If you haven’t tried Alcone products before this is your chance! Simply follow the link to Tenaya’s closed Facebook group and request to join. Then like and share the group for extra entries! You are entered for your chance to win! (Contest open now through Sunday 7/24/16. Winners announced on Monday 7/25/16).

Happy shopping!

 

The Whatever Mom is a twin mom learning to let go of perfection. She shares her real life struggles with parenting through her blog and contributes her time and talents as a writer to Hudson Valley Parent and Masshole Mommy. When she isn’t writing you can find her chugging coffee, folding laundry and not judging other parents. Don’t forget to subscribe via email so you never miss a blog post again! You can also find her work featured on Mamapedia and The Novice Mommy.

 

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Friday Favorite- Lose That Mommy Guilt {Giveaway}

WELCOME TO

Happy Friday All!

This week guest blogger (and new mom) Debra shared with you how she’s read all the latest books on baby sleep and none of them work. Guess what I’m sharing with you today? A book written by an expert. Wait, wait, wait!!  This isn’t just any expert. She is an expert at letting go of perfection. Lose That Mommy Guilt, Tales and Tips from an Imperfect Mom by Cara Maksimow. 

mommy guilt cover

I know most days it’s hard to find time to read the back of a shampoo bottle let alone an entire book. But the 150 pages is a quick read! Instead of the pretentious lecture about the exact steps you should follow to execute efficient routines, Cara gives a few options with the understanding that not everything works for everyone. 

cara maksimow

Cara is a certified therapist, writer, mother and owner of Maximize Wellness Counseling & Couching, LLC. Everything written in this book encapsulates my exact mission as The Whatever Mom. And it touches on nearly every area of motherhood where I feel guilty. From potty training, to pacifiers to dealing with kid drama Cara shares her own guilty moments and what works for her.

I love that Cara encourages us mommies to embrace our imperfections as part of this motherhood experience. We are all going to make mistakes and it isn’t worth our time to continually beat ourselves up over them. “As the baby grows the mommy guilt grows. It doesn’t matter how good of a mom  you are, you will find a way to beat yourself up over something, I am here to say that it does not have to be that way. As moms, we are amazing and we don’t recognize it enough! . . . You do not need to let “perfect” get in the way of amazing parenting.”

I literally felt myself breathe a sigh of relief after reading those words. I wish I had read them sooner! Cara delves deep into the mom psyche and pulls out the big things we stress ourselves out with and then tells us, it’s going to be OK! I don’t know about you, but for me, I need to hear that now and then. I need to hear someone tell me that I’m not the only one worrying about ruining my kids lives (don’t worry we aren’t ruining anything).

We all get caught in the big trap of anticipating judgement from bystanders. Even a woman who has degrees and is educated on human behavior gets stuck in those real moments. You know the ones where you have to make a snap judgement to let your kid pee in a parking lot?

“I admit I taught my three-year-old girl to squat in the mall parking lot once (maybe more than once) to avoid unbuckling the baby from the car seat and going all of the way back inside the mall to find the nearest bathroom. I was smart enough to know we would not make it in time. Driving home quickly would have at best lead to a urine soaked car seat, so I made my choice.

Thankfully, it was summer and she was wearing plastic jelly shoes. I was worried someone would see me and judge my parenting. My negative self talk was on high that day. What mom lets her three-year-old girl pee in the parking lot? Clearly, I was that mom. It is what it is. I am not particularly proud of it, but I have learned to let go of that particular guilt.”

That’s why I enjoy this book so much. Cara writes from an authentic place of struggle and humor. I feel like she gives us permission to be real about the crazy choices we make as parents. And isn’t that what being a Whatever Mom is all about? Letting go of the idea of perfection? Life is messy and completely imperfect. You do whatever works to get through the day even if it is just surviving from one moment to the next!

Cara has also published a few other books that you can find on Amazon. One lucky reader is going to get a copy of Loose That Mommy Guilt and a bonus planner for a Kick Ass Month! You know the drill, enter below!

kick ass month

Thank you Cara for writing this book so the rest of us can realize not one single mom has it completely together and none of us is escaping motherhood without feeling guilty.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Whatever Mom is a twin mom learning to let go of perfection. She shares her real life struggles with parenting through her blog and contributes her time and talents as a writer to Hudson Valley Parent and Masshole Mommy. When she isn’t writing you can find her chugging coffee, folding laundry and not judging other parents. Don’t forget to subscribe via email so you never miss a blog post again! You can also find her work featured on Mamapedia and The Novice Mommy.

Disclosure: There are no affiliate links contained in this post. Product for giveaway provided by Cara Maksimow personally. No financial compensation was received for this review. All opinions contained herein belong solely to The Whatever Mom. 

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Friday Favorites -Anna Nova Review & Giveaway

Spring Awakening Satchel Anna Nova

Anna Nova Australia is hosting this promotional giveaway and has provided the merchandise depicted for review. All honest opinions belong solely to The Whatever Mom. No affiliate links are contained within this post and no financial compensation given.

Before I was a mom I loved the fresh scent of a new hand bag. I would drive an hour to my favorite outlet to peruse the season’s newest offerings.  Those gorgeous designer bags were replaced by cute diaper bags and large shoulder bags. As cute and functional as those bags are, I miss carrying something I absolutely love. I am super picky when it comes to my hand bag choices. I want to carry a bag no one else has, I want quality and I want something that makes me happy. Oh and now it has to have enough room to carry the stuff my kids hand off to me.

Just when I thought designer bags were no longer in reach for my mom lifestyle I was asked to review the Anna Nova Spring Awakening Traveller. (I may have literally squealed with delight). To have designer quality in my hands again felt like a luxurious dream come true.  I have been longing for something that could keep up with the busy demands of my mom-lifestyle, yet make me happy to carry around. Maybe it is because Anna herself is a mother of 4 she understands how to marry together form and function with fashion.

The Spring Awakening Traveller Satchel

I don’t know why I never thought to carry a cross the body satchel before! Even though this satchel is half the size of my current bag, everything fits inside! There are pockets galore creating a very efficient way to carry my mom items (I could write a separate post on the amount of stuff I have inside my mom bag). After I transferred everything into the satchel I discovered an entirely empty pocket still available for all the future stuff I’ll need to cram inside!  All the pockets are secured with a zipper or a snap making it hard for tiny hands to smuggle things in or out.

anna nova stitching

I could see right away my Anna Nova is stitched with quality and care! The stitching on my worn out shoulder bag is frayed and very thin (clearly not a designer bag). The turquoise threads on the Anna Nova Traveller is not only gorgeous but heavier and deeper which means less fray and longer wear.

Anna Nova Traveler

The fabric on the inside of this satchel feels much softer and I can tell immediately it has a better thread count (it simply means a tighter weave which equals longer life). The fabric inside my cheap shoulder bag became “pilly” and worn shortly after I purchased it. Not a very luxurious feeling.

After years of carrying shoulder bags that slide down my arm while trying to hold two little hands across a parking lot, I am ready for a cross the body bag. This week alone I wore my Traveller to our soccer practices, during preschool drop off and even out shopping. Knowing my items are secure and safe from falling off of me and spilling out as I am chasing a kid gives me less to worry about. It is so light weight and comfortable I find myself going back into the house to look for my purse. Meanwhile, I’m already wearing it! Ha, ha!

Anna Nova Spring Awakening Traveler

If I am being honest, this print wasn’t my first choice, but I kept coming back to it because there was just something comforting about it. It reminds me of the floral prints I used to wear as a teenager (back when I was carefree and had time for fashion). The pastels on black aren’t super bold, but lend just enough color to make a statement and still coordinate with my casual outfits.

I know no one likes to chat dollars and cents but I feel like if I am bringing you an honest review we have to go there. I feel everything is very reasonably priced for designer quality. This particular bag is around $105 which is way less than any other designer bag I’ve purchased, but the quality is on par. Take a look at the Anna Nova website to see the other affordable pieces available; from coin purses to phone pouches, from back packs to overnight bags there is a bag to fit every need.

The Spring Awakening Pouch

Anna Nova Spring Awakening Pouch

The folks at Anna Nova also sent this companion pouch that fits inside my satchel. I have filled it with my arsenal of lip glosses, lip balms and favorite essential oils. The pouch fits perfectly inside any pocket on this satchel. It is also a great pouch to store your cell phone in inside of a diaper bag, or large shoulder bag for quick access.

Guess what?! I have one extra Spring Awakening Pouch to giveaway!!  Are you excited?!! You should be!!  This roomy little pouch can be a piece of luxury you can count on every time you open your purse.

To enter follow the instructions below and check back on The Whatever Mom Facebook page on Monday morning!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

The Whatever Mom is a twin mom learning to let go of perfection. She shares her real life struggles with parenting through her blog and contributes her time and talents as a writer to Hudson Valley Parent and Masshole Mommy. When she isn’t writing you can find her chugging coffee, folding laundry and not judging other parents. Don’t forget to subscribe via email so you never miss a blog post again! You can also find her work featured on Mamapedia and The Novice Mommy. 

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Friday Favorites – Jolly Dragons GIVEAWAY!

Jolly Dragons Organic Kids Clothes

Promotional products generously provided by Jolly Dragons. No financial compensation was received for this review. All opinions are honest and belong solely to The Whatever Mom. Does not contain affiliate links.

Here it is … my new favorite: Jolly Dragons organic kids clothing! I’ll be honest I had no idea the difference between organic cotton vs. typical cotton fabric until I held these shirts in my hand. They are so much softer than any t-shirt my kids own. 

Jolly Dragons

When our package arrived, our shirts were hand wrapped in tissue paper and sealed with an adorable Jolly Dragons logo. There was a hand written note included! How often do you get a hand written note with your products? Right away my girls loved the designs and the colors. Mermaids and butterflies are kind of their thing. I am so impressed by the fabric quality, the colorful print on each shirt and the attention to detail in the design and packaging.

Jolly Dragons Logo

Jolly Dragons is a family owned business located in Cape Cod, MA. and what a delight it has been getting to know the owner in our email conversations! Each shirt and body suit is designed by this mom and dad team. What I love most about family owned businesses is that they GET ‘family’ in every sense of the word. They get the struggle for balance and the struggle to find safe products to use on our kids. And, that’s how Jolly Dragons was born!

Jolly Dragons family

This family puts great emphasis on using organic cotton fabric to keep pesticides away from your baby’s new skin, and sustainable printing methods. Your toddler won’t care they are wearing an organic shirt printed with eco-friendly digital printing. But they will LOVE the vivid and colorful prints! How cute is this spider shirt!!?

 Jolly-Dragons---Spider

Sizes range from newborn to size 6T. You have your kid’s skin covered (see what I did there) through every tender stage of their young lives. You will have peace of mind knowing these shirts are labeled with the GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard) seal of approval. 

 GOTS

My kids loved the shirts Jolly Dragons sent for review so much that they argued over who gets to keep which design. (There were actual tears and fist-a-cuffs). This means there will be TWO lucky winners receiving an organic t-shirt for free! 

EVERYONE is getting a 25% discount just for being a reader of The Whatever Mom! Perfect timing to help fill those Easter baskets! Shop the Jolly Dragons catalog and when you are ready to check out use the discount code: thewhatevermom.  Enjoy the savings! The folks at Jolly Dragons have a lot of exciting new things happening! So be sure to find them and like them on Facebook so you can be the first to see!

Follow the instructions below to enter! Good luck! Winners can select from the two designs pictured above (mermaid or monarch).

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Whatever Mom is a twin mom learning to let go of perfection. She shares her real life struggles with parenting through her blog and contributes her time and talents as a writer to Hudson Valley Parent and Masshole Mommy. When she isn’t writing you can find her chugging coffee, folding laundry and not judging other parents. Don’t forget to subscribe via email so you never miss a blog post again!

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Friday Favorites- Hungry Root Review & GIVEAWAY!

Hungryroot

If I said the words: Gluten Free. Dairy Free. Soy Free. All Natural. Vegan. Would you wonder, “is it also flavor free?” Not if it’s a meal from Hungryroot!

Hungryroot offers amazing veggie noodle based meals served with a creative sauce that can easily pair with a protein (purchase with or without grilled chicken). Home cooks can prepare their favorite meals in less than 10 minutes on the stove top or in the microwave. All the meals are locally sourced, non-GMO and are gluten free. Many are dairy free and even vegan. This is the answer to all my food dilemmas!

As a busy mom, with dietary restrictions, I often lack the time to prep healthy meals for myself. I spend so much time making meals I know my picky eaters will like that I am left at the mercy of hunger and I grab anything quick. I have dreamed of finding healthy organic convenience meals for years. Now, I can make a full sized healthy meal for myself before you can say chocolate chip cookie binge (OK more like 7 minutes). Every meal is less than 500 calories, rich in nutrients and already prepped!

Hungryroot package Noodles

I placed my first order as a Christmas gift to me. I was curious to taste for myself how root noodles could compare to the taste of traditional pasta meals. I selected a gift pack of three full meals and one side and one dessert. Did I mention these FRESH healthy quick cook meals were delivered right to my door?

Hungryroot insulated cooler

I wasn’t home when my package arrived. But, the meals were all kept safe inside the insulated box with cooler packs. Incidentally, all the shipping materials are biodegradable and recyclable. Be sure to check with the local recycling guidelines in your area and read the directions on packaging before recycling.

Carrot Noodles Hungryroot

My husband raves over every meal we try! The man who could live on pasta with every meal- RAVES over noodles made from vegetables! I personally love the Rutabaga noodles with Mushroom Pistou Sauce and grilled chicken the best, but those Sweet Potato noodles with Creamy Cashew Alfredo and Roasted Falafel have me craving more! My picky little eaters and I are now addicted to the Coconut Carrot Cake Bites with coconut frosting (all vegan!). I can’t wait to try the Black Bean Brownie Batter and the Maple Chick Pea Pancake Batter!

Carrot coconut cookie bites Hungryroot

The cook time and the already portioned ingredients sold me on Hungryroot! A price point of $10-$12 per meal to serve 1-2 people may seem pricey for a family budget, but for this gluten/lactose/soy intolerant mama on a time crunch these super convenient meals really fit the bill!

You all know how much I love a company that gives back. Hungryroot is a 1+1 company which means they donate 1% of their profits to charity and volunteer 1% of their time to support nutritional education and healthy eating. At the time of my purchase they were donating fresh meals to City Harvest a NYC based food rescue agency.

Hungryroot meals are available through Hungryroot.com or FreshDirect and AmazonFresh.

So, hungry for more? Well, nothing gets a Friday started like some free food am I right? The amazing folks over at Hungry Root are giving all of you the chance to win a fabulous FREE meal including dessert! Just enter below!

 

 

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Promotional product provided by Hungryroot. Financial compensation not provided for this review. All opinions provided herein belong solely to The Whatever Mom (and lots of other people who think Hungryroot has yummy food).

*Title photo credit: Hungryroot.

The Whatever Mom is a full-time wife and twin mama living on coffee and wine. She enjoys the pure rush of cleaning the BIG potty between loads of laundry. It is her dream that moms everywhere accept and embrace the Whatever Mom philosophy which can be found here.

Find more from Roxanne at Hudson Valley Parent and at Masshole Mommy

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4 Easy Gift Giving Traditions AND A Giveaway!

My computer is FINALLY virus free and back home on top of my desk!! I’m so excited I feel like giving something away! But what? Hmmm… my stapler is pretty cool and useful. Nah.  It is Christmas so I’ve got to be a little generous. How about a $25.00 gift certificate to Toys R Us? YES!!!

So, I am going to need you to share my blog with your friends! Not my Facebook page (although that is pretty fabby too) my actual blog! Once I reach 500 blog followers I will pick a winner!! To enter you HAVE to comment below THIS post with the number of friends you’ve shared my blog with.

Let the sharing begin! I’m sure you have some Christmas shopping to finish up and wouldn’t a gift card to TRU help with that? The sooner we get to 500 followers the sooner you can win that card!

Speaking of gifts, here are 4 of our favorite gift giving traditions:

Book-A-Night Advent Count Down

Book a night Advent count down.
Book a night Advent count down.

My kids really love this one! It’s basically a whole month of presents before the actual presents arrive. Each night before bed they get to open one book. We read the stories while eating Christmas cookies and sipping milk. Some nights they can’t wait to take their book to their room to look it over alone. In their rooms. In silence. I think I love this gifting tradition a little more than they do. I pick up gently used books all year from garage sales and the local libraries for a total of 46 books. The girls get a book a night from Dec. 1st-23rd. On Christmas Eve. they get to open a bigger gift of pajamas.

A Cookie for Me, A Cookie for You!

Cookies and cinnamon applesauce ornaments are great for Firefighters, Police Officers, Mail carriers and anyone who likes cookies.
Cookies are great for Firefighters, Police Officers, Mail carriers and anyone who likes cookies.

We make and frost (poorly as pictured above) several dozen cookies to deliver to our local Fire Fighters and Police Officers. Not only is it a great way to show our gratitude, but this tradition also introduces our kids to important community members. They begin to understand who the helpers are and to not be afraid of the men and women in these uniforms.

Share the Craft Love with Friends

Fun little crafty cards for neighborhood friends.
Fun little crafty cards for neighborhood friends.

My little family is really fortunate to live next door to some of the most wonderful people on earth! We like to share some fun homemade crafts with them. I traced each kids foot to make penguins and added colored paper for the belly, the beak and some googly eyes. We made them into cards and delivered personally. We made the trees  by gluing Popsicle sticks, fruit loops cereal and a pretzel to green paper. These are really easy crafts for the age 2-3 crowd.

Making Ornaments

Hand print snow man ornaments are great for the grand parents!
Hand print snow man ornaments are great for the grand parents!

This is one of my favorite ornament gifts. Here is a quick tutorial from Youtube:

If you are giving these away to the grandparents or family you can even attach this little poem:

These aren’t just five snowmen
As anyone can see.
I made them with my hand
Which is a part of me.
Now each year when you trim the tree
You’ll look back and recall
Christmas of 2014
When my hand was just this small!

Each year we buy a new ornament for our kids to put on the tree. The point is to one day hand them a set of ornaments for their own tree in their home. We also make one hand print keepsake ornament. This way we’ll have a set of ornaments ornaments for our own tree when the kids take theirs.

Don’t forget to share my blog with friends and comment below how many friends you shared with! Once I reach 500 followers I’ll pick a winner for a $25.00 Toys R Us gift card!

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*This giveaway is now closed*

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Why Mom’s Night Out is Important – GIVEAWAY!!

The other day I cracked under the pressure of potty training the twins alone while my husband was away for FIVE days. I took to social media to share my plight. I described my fantasy of checking into a hotel for three days to shower for 8 hours alone, eat some chocolate cake and watch hours upon hours of mindless TV. Judging by some of the comments not everyone shared my enthusiasm for moms taking alone time.

For the record, I don’t want to spend time away from my kids. I just want to unplug from the demands of my day job.  Being home with kids 24/7 is hard work. I would love a break now and then. That’s why I look forward to Mom’s Night Out (MNO)! Whether it’s going out for drinks or dinner or my new favorite, Vine Van Gogh paint night, moms *NEED* a time out!

Vine Gogh Paint Night
Vine Gogh Paint Night

Here is why I love a night out once in a while:

Spending all my time tuned into the demands of 3-year-olds obscures my link to other humans. I could go days without chatting to another adult. Sometimes I long to be connected to the rest of the world. I don’t mean the dramas of Facebook, but an honest connection with friends. When I spend time with other people it feels like I have more people in my circle than just princesses and Strawberry Shortcake. (FYI: totally a snooty bunch).

Not a snooty one in the bunch!
My circle of peeps.

When I leave hubby in charge for a night it makes him more aware of the amount of work it takes to get our kids from the breakfast table to bedtime. It’s a bonus if he has to handle the bedtime shenanigans all by himself. Plus, it’s great daddy-daughter bonding time, right?

Sharing war stories with other moms gives me perspective. My kids do stupid things all the time. In the moment of cleaning it all up I’m not laughing… until I hear about how it happened to some other mom. Stuff is just way funnier when its not happening to you!  It reminds me that I am not living in a bubble and that all of the stress of parenting is temporary. Yes. Even 18 years is temporary. One day soon I’ll be sending them off on the school bus to spend 6 hours of their day with other people. Then like a week later they’ll start college!

When I talk to other adults and use big words like “legalization” and “perfunctory,” it reminds me I am smart and stuff. It makes me feel like those few remaining brain cells clustered way in the back haven’t failed me!

When I spend too much time with poop it makes me ‘hatey.’ Five days alone with twins who are potty training is insanity … no it’s twinsanity! No one should ever have to clean up that much poop. Ever.

Back when I was a ‘working girl’ I’d count down the week till Friday at 5 o’clock! Then I could check out of my work week and head out for nom-noms and beer. Now my 5 o’clock countdown is for bedtime with no promise of nom-noms or beer. Except on Mom’s Night!

I like to paint... and I like to drink wine.
I like to paint… and I like to drink wine.

Thank you Vine Van Gogh for another great night out!

If you haven’t been to a Vine Van Gogh paint night yet you’re in luck! Enter for your chance to win a 2 pack of tickets to the Brews and Brushes event at Keegan Ales on Aug. 20th! Click here to enter

No skills required! Just you, some friends and some fun!

Vine_Van_Gogh-Logo-website

Actual Facebook fantasy status update: After this week alone (that’s 5 days in a row) while hubby was away for work (eating steak for dinner, talking to humans and sleeping in a cushy hotel) I realize something:
All I want for my birthday is to check into a hotel for 2 maybe 3 days, take a 8 hour hot shower alone, order some fresh hot food and sit down while I eat it….maybe even lie in bed and eat it… yeah, totally lie in bed and eat it. Might binge on a little (or a lot of) chocolate cake. Watch actual live TV and sleep. I’m not even going to get dressed, just wear a robe. Then I’m going to wake up and take a nap before my lunch of chocolate cake and champagne. I might text a few mom friends while I’m at it and tell them to make up an excuse to get out of the house. Say you need to run to Target for ‘lady supplies’ and drive over here to hang out for a few hours. I’ll put on clothes and we’ll just laugh and eat and watch TV. It will be great!

Where do you go for a fun Mom’s Night out?

*THIS GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED*

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