June 26, 2010

Alfredo Sauce

Definitely not a meal for one who watches their fat intake.

I tried making Alfredo Sauce for the first time.

It was super easy and tasted oh so good.

But it has to be eaten in a limited amount as the fat content is quite high.

Here is the recipe I used:

1/2 cup Butter
8 oz Cream Cheese
1 Cup 1/2 + 1/2
1/3 Cup Parmesan Cheese
I Tbs Garlic

Melt the butter add the cheese and stir until it melts. Add the 1/2 + 1/2, parmesan cheese, and garlic. Stir until smooth and hot.

I can see where a few changes will bring down the fat content, but will it still taste just as good?

We will find out once I try it - just hope it gets the same thumbs-up from the family as the original recipe does.

June 21, 2010

Sunscreen for Protection

'Tis the season for sunscreen.

But before you slather it on - read your label.

83% of the sunscreens out there only offer protection against the UVA rays, not the UVB ones.

Choose a SPF 30 and make sure it is marked broad spectrum - it will protect against both the UVA and UVB rays.

And don't forget the lip balm - they are even more susceptible to skin cancer since they are usually uncovered.

Apply a balm several times a day that contains at least SPF 15.

And don't think you are safe during the winter - year round protection with sunscreen is recommended as the sun's rays are reflected off the ice in snow in the winter time which intensifies their effects.

June 18, 2010

Gift Cards for Favorite Stores

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of FriendGiftr. All opinions are 100% mine.

I really wish I had known about the FriendGiftr website before I purchased a gift card for a friend.

I bought a card for her for her birthday earlier this year, and although she liked it, I later found out she would have enjoyed receiving a card to a different merchant.

I specifically went to a store, which was quite a ways out of my area, as this used to be one of her favorite places to shop.

But that was before the economy took a downturn.

She now likes to shop where she can get the most for her dollar.

And where she can still buy her favorite brand name items.

I didn't realize she had become such a savvy shopper until I overheard her talking about the great deals she had found at her new favorite shopping spot.

She went on about how she really loves this store and doesn't go anywhere else now.

Now, if I had purchased the card at the Friendgiftr site, she could have exchanged the one I gave her for a different merchant.

And it would not have cost her a penny to do so.

She finally went shopping at her old favorite store and she did find something she could use for the house.

But next time I will be heading online to buy her gift card - who knows, she might have a "new" favorite store.

And she can shop exactly where she wants by using this service from the website, Facebook, iPhone, Blackberry, or Android.

Visit my sponsor: America's Favorite Gift Cards

June 17, 2010

Wild Rice

There are 3 kinds of Wild Rice that are native to North America.

It doesn't look or taste like the familiar white and brown rice that we all recognize.

This wild rice is dark brown and black and is very long.

I have never had it by itself, it has always been mixed in with the white rice.

It has a very unique and rather strong flavor - perhaps that is why it is mixed with the white.

It is high in protein and fiber and it contains no gluten.

This rice is rather expensive, so if you get a chance to try it, do yourself a favor and enjoy it's unique flavor.

June 16, 2010

A Special Knife

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Swiss Army. All opinions are 100% mine.

I can remember mine well.

The Swiss Army Knife that I received as a gift many years ago.

I was just entering Girl Scouts, and a knife was on the list of necessities that we needed to have in our gear.

I was a bit intimidated by it at first - after all it was something I had never been allowed to have before.

My Dad taught me how to use it, and I just loved it after that.

He taught me how to "whitte" and carve with it.

Of course I was never as good as he was with it, but I made a good attempt to carve something out of that wood.

Jump forward about 25 years, and my daughter decided to join the scouts.

That trusty knife was still around and I was excited to give it to her for her gear.

Now, 10 years later, she is looking for a gift for her husband who is celebrating his first Father's Day.

The Dual Pro X Swiss Army Knife caught her eye right off.

After all these years she knows how reliable these quality knives are.

And while she is at it I will mention to her to visit the Share the Adventure Facebook Page where she will have the chance to win a $25,000 Ultimate Adventure.

Visit my sponsor: Share an Adventure with Dad!

June 15, 2010

Jasmine Rice

I had wanted to try Jasmine rice for quite a while, and when the market put it on sale, I was quite excited.

This rice tends to be a bit more expensive than the regular white that we eat, and I wasn't too sure it would be something my family liked.

Along with the sale, I had a coupon which helped make the decision to buy it even more appealing.

Upon bringing it home, I couldn't wait to smell it - to see if there was any difference between the white and it.

It smelled the same, but the grains were smoother and longer.

It took about the same amount of time to cook it, and it smelled heavenly cooking.

And eating it was such a treat - what a delicate, sweet taste.

It is now our favorite rice.

It is the only one that we eat as-is - veggies or sauces would take away from it's unique flavor!

June 11, 2010

Redecorating on the List

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Glidden. All opinions are 100% mine.

We have been doing a few small "home improvement" projects over the last couple of weeks mixed in with the cleaning and preparations for our summer visitors.

Most of these projects have been inexpensive - changing the room around or adding various small decorative accents.

We will be tackling the bathroom next, and the new curtains and shower accessories have already been purchased.

We gave some thought to repainting it and looked into some the Glidden paint colors at the Home Depot.

All those extra large paint chips caught my eye right off, and I put a few samples together just to get an idea of what we could do. They even had a couple of coordinating colors on each card so we could get additional ideas.

Then the clerk pointed out the paint testers.

Oh man, I was in heaven now!

These testers are little jars of paint with a paint brush built right into the top cover.

They are only $2.95, and you can purchase this small tester to try it on what you want to paint to make sure it is exactly what you want.

The colors in the store always look different when you get them home due to different lighting conditions and the actual material and color you are painting over.

With this little tester, you can try it on your project before you buy a whole load of paint for the whole job.

And if you have already painted, and need a touch up, these testers are also great for that job - quick, easy, and most of all - not messy.

We still haven't decided yet on the repainting, but it was great to learn what was available for the job when the time comes.

You can find out more about these nifty little testers at the Glidden Paint website, where Glidden Paint Helps Make Color Easy with the www.Glidden.com Room Painter.

Visit my sponsor: Glidden

June 10, 2010

Found the Bike Too

I was too happy the other day to find my old skiing machine that we had put away.

Well, we put away a lot of stuff during that time years ago, and I found another fine treasure.

The old exercise bike.

I remember purchasing that bike right after I had my first baby.

I bought it used for $25.00 from a lady who didn't even put 100 miles on it.

It's not a fancy one, but it did have a speedometer and an odometer on it which was just perfect for me.

Looking at that odometer - it has 2606 miles on it.

I really used it to get all that baby weight off after the first one.

It got some use after the second, but nothing like the first.

Perhaps if I had kept it in the house and used it, I would not be in the shape I am in now.

Oh well, it's outside too, and I will be anxious to see how many miles it has on it by winter!

June 8, 2010

Summer Travel Has Begun

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of NAVTEQ. All opinions are 100% mine.

It has officially started - the beginning of summer in our family.

My son graduates next week, so school is all out now for him.

We are not usually big travelers, but we are going to be having company arriving in a few days, and we will be spending time on the road.

Now, we know our area pretty good, but our aunt wants to visit regions that we do not usually go to.

It has been a number of years since she has been up to New England and she is looking forward to visiting a lot of family.

Family that is spread out all over the place.

Which means we will be putting some serious time in the car.

And we had better know exactly were we are going, because the car has no air conditioner, and we don't want her to spend any unnecessary time in the hot car.

Well, it is a good thing that my son decided to purchase a GPS right after he got his driver's license a couple of years ago.

We laughed at him for doing so and teased him about not paying attention as we drove him around all these years.

He should know most of the area like the back of his hand.

Well, look who is laughing now since we will most definitely be needing his "Tina", as he calls his female, British accented GPS device.

Well, I say, how reliable is Tina, these days - after all she is over two years old.

I told him to head over to www.updateyourmap.com and check her out.

It will not only save us time, but money and gas as well if we get Tina updated with all the latest routes.

Over at www.updateyourmap.com, the updates will also include the closest gas stations, ATMs and restaurants.

That should keep everyone happy, and most importantly, our Aunt will be able to enjoy her stay with minimal hassles on the road!

Visit my sponsor: Making mom's life a little easier

Skiing Machine

Digging some of our things out of storage, we ran across an old relic that used to be a part of our exercise routine.

It is a skiing machine or slider that we bought back in the early 1990's.

I used to use that thing faithfully every morning for a couple of years.

When the family began to grow, we put it in storage as we needed the room.

We decided to set it up outside now as it is the perfect season for using it in the cool evening air.

A bit of oil in needed spots and a cover to protect it from the rain, and it is good to go

Glad we "found" it again!

June 7, 2010

Perfect Gift for Dad

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Bliss Living. All opinions are 100% mine.

Check out the bag in the above photo.

What kind of bag do you think it might be used for?

Would you believe it is a diaper bag?

My daughter has one just like this, and both her and her husband really love it.

It is a Diaper Dude bag that is designed especially for men - and from what I have seen, the new dad doesn't mind carrying it around one bit.

Finding gifts for Dad, especially the new Dad isn't always an easy task, but I can guarantee this practical one will be hit.

Even the new Uncle didn't mind having it slung over his shoulder either - and he is a teenager.

And by making Dad so happy, I bet he would love to find the perfect piece of jewelry for mom.

A beautiful family ring or necklace that has a birth stone that represents each member of the family would be a great gift.

I know I love the family ring that my husband bought me many years ago.

It was such surprise, something I wasn't expecting at all.

Both the kids had been in on it all along too.

They were young at the time, and it always amazed me that they never said a word about it to me.

I am sure my daughter would love to have one of these - and it will come when she completes her family.

Visit my sponsor: The Perfect Father's Day Gift

Over 25 Years of Photos

Taking a break from the cleaning spree that we have been on, we looked through some old photos albums.

It started with the wedding album when we got married almost 28 years ago.

Then the years before the kids - those were 2 albums altogether.

Then the kids came and there was a new album just about every year as they grew up - a whole bookshelf of them!

It was such a joy to view them, but it just boggles one's mind at how fast the years went.

One thing we kept saying over and over gain - look how young we were - and how skinny too!

There is nothing like looking at old photos to get one a bit more motivated in the weight loss department.

It has certainly got me thinking harder about it.

Now, as long as I can keep those thoughts, I might actually loose some pounds.

Perhaps hanging one on the fridge will help!

June 4, 2010

Company is Coming

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Hampton Hotels. All opinions are 100% mine.

It has been quite a few years since we have seen her, and we are excited that my husband's aunt will be coming for a visit in another week and a half.

She had originally planned on staying in a hotel in town, but the time that she is coming happens to be the busiest one in our area.

It is motorcycle week, and all the rooms in every hotel, motel, and inn has been booked since last year.

So she will be staying with us and we will do all we can to make her stay a good one.

It will only be a week, then she will be off to visit friends in the next state.

She is still setting up her itinerary, and I can't wait to let her know about a deal I have just found.

The Hampton Hotels are having a daily giveaway of a free weekend stay at any of their hotels.

The Hampton Chain of Friends Sweepstakes would be just right for her to enter as she will be traveling with her best friend for pretty much the whole summer.

They will be spending quite a bit of time in Maine visiting family and friends.

I believe Bar Harbor is on her list - and wouldn't you know - there is a Hampton Hotel there that would be perfect for them spend some time in.

I am sure she will be pleased - and if you are traveling, be sure to see what they have to offer for you and your friends.

It could be a free weekend - and you can't beat that!

Click Here


Visit my sponsor: Win a free Weekened Stay

Ice Tea Additions

In my last post about Ice Tea, I mentioned how we made our own tea by brewing it in the sun.

We really enjoy this simple and inexpensive tea, but we drink so much of it that sometimes it's nice for a change.

And in the summertime there just isn't much else to drink as we are not into soda or juices.

We also like the Arizona teas, but they can get expensive and the sugar in them is just too much sometimes.

So, we decided to try adding a can of the peach flavored one to our jug of sun tea after we had already had a couple of cups out of it.

Wow - it was really good!

It added just the right amount of peach flavor, and it wasn't too sweet either.

What a nice change it was, and the blueberry is next on the list to try.

And it really stretched that can of tea out too.

Now when the sales come on that tea, we will stock up and enjoy our new discovery all summer long!

June 3, 2010

New App for the iPhone

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

I don't have one, but there are times I really wish I did, and this is one of them.

That would be an iPhone.

When we chose our new cell phone plan earlier this year, I gave it much consideration.

But the pocketbook just didn't allow it - both the phone cost and the monthly fees were too much.

Had this new application been around then, I would be using that phone now.

This new app can be found at WeReward.com, and it pays you for using your iPhone for various tasks and checks-ins.

I can see where it would easily pay for the phone and usage of itself in a pretty quick time.

Especially if one relies on using the internet from their phone.

This new app also integrates with Facebook and Twitter.

Some of the tasks are for fun and you earn points as you accomplish them.

All these points add up, and when you reach a certain amount, you can convert them to dollars.

These dollars are your money and they are sent to your paypal account.

If you have a debit card on your paypal account, the money is ready to use as soon as you receive it.

Quick and easy and fun.

If you have an iPhone, Download the App and give it a try.

And I would love to know what you think of it.


Visit my sponsor: WeReward for iPhone