September 2014 | My WAHM Plan

Archive for September 2014

A Fall Garden Promise

Monday, September 29, 2014


October is knocking on the door and I for one am thrilled to see summer fade away. Good bye hot and humid days, good bye endless mowing sessions, good bye weeding… oh wait; I still have to weed in the fall.

Goodbye ugly, over grown flowerbeds, goodbye stringy tomato vines. I bid you all farewell with an apology for not doing what a garden loving lady should have in summer.

 I neglected you and it shows. I was too busy in here, writing and growing my business to take care of you.  I would be appalled if company were to saunter up my walk today and see the state of my flowerbeds; so please don’t come over just yet.

I’m going to get things whipped into shape for fall. Then you can come over! I’ll scrub the front porch and rockers and I’ll plant Mums in my pots and allow my poor, worn out wave Petunia’s to finally rest.


colorful Mums #fall #gardening



I’ll weed and pull up that old Rose bush I keep saying I’m going too. I’ll turn over the mulch and add some new and I’ll put in my new solar landscape lights. The front yard is going to look great when I’m done.


rambling red Rose

I’ll clean off the back deck one more time and invite you to sit, have some tea and chat a while. And while you do, you can see my lovingly tended shade flower beds, full of neatly groomed Azalea bushes and Hosta. You may even catch the faint scent of my Rosemary, still doing well in her pretty blue pot.


Once our cups are empty, we’ll take a leisurely stroll towards my pumpkin patch, the one crop that seems to thrive without any love and care from me. Okay, sure, it is an accidental pumpkin patch. One we never dreamed would take root right on the fringe of our burn pile/bone-fire spot. 


pumpkin patch
small pumpkin


We chucked our old pumpkins there last year and voila! Here it is, producing small little pumpkins of happiness. We were able to cut one, tie a pretty bow on it and give it to our new neighbors in a true show of southern hospitality. Thank you accidental pumpkin patch for coming through!  


Hopefully, these pumpkins and my fall gardening efforts will be enough to make up for my summer of garden laziness.  Now that fall is here, I'm going to be ready for company.  

harvest pumpkins happy #Fall


Please share in comments: Did you have a productive and happy summer gardening season, or did you get too busy like me?

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Bloggers wanted for 2014 Holiday Gift Guide

Friday, September 26, 2014


Happy Friday dear readers. I know that's it's only September, but for many bloggers, it means time to work on their gift guides. Never having done a gift guide of my own, I'm happy to team up with a group of seasoned bloggers this year.



Holiday Gift Guide sign up


Bloggers 2014 Holiday Gift Guide Sign Up


Bloggers sign up Today to get listed on the "2014 Holiday Gift Guide" that will roll out full force Oct 25 thru Dec 25, 2014 . Many bloggers will be participating so its going to be huge! 

Right now Sign up is Free and Limited !

** Why Should you Sign Your Blog Up?**
Most of the Business's that have listing on here are ones who hire bloggers for Reviews and PR Jobs through the year, so a great way to get noticed as a PR Blogger and get on the Reps Blogger Lists for when they have reviews and sponsor post jobs etc.


** Does My Blog have to be a Big Blog **
NO - this is the great part, any size blog , any niche is welcome. The only restriction we have is , your blog can not have pornograph
ic material on it. If it does - Do not sign up - we are Family Friendly !

** Where will my Link to my Blog Be Seen **
We will have a page specific listing " PR Friendly Bloggers " on the 2014 Holiday Gift Guide Web Site - Visible to all on the landing page and other guide pages. Your Link will be linked to your blog or media kit page ( your choice). This Gift guide will be promoted by many bloggers, as well as the businesses on their sites and social media too during the 2 months. Also we may even feature YOUR Blog in our Special Mailings from time to time.


** Perks **
  • PR Marketers for Businesses See Your Page - These are the people who Hire Bloggers to promote Products for reviews, sponsor posts, ambassador programs, etc- all year long !
  • There will be special giveaway promotions during this time , Fun Secret Santa for Bloggers Only. ++

** HOW DO I SIGN MY BLOG UP**

Click HERE to Sign UP Today !

I hope you'll join the fun and help grow your blog with us! 



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Wordless Wednesday- A girl and her Cat

Wednesday, September 24, 2014


My youngest daughter has a way with animals. She loves them, they love her. She and our outside cat have a very special bond which is clearly evident to anyone that gets to watch them together. Here are some photos from their recent "photo shoot". There were close to 40 photos in this session, it was hard for me to choose which ones to share. All photos were taken by my daughter with Catty-Cat's approval.


Our outside Cat
Catty-Cat comes when my daughter calls her. 


A girl and her Cat #love
Starting things off with a good chin scratch.

Our Cat showing some belly fur
Catty-Cat plops and asks for more love. Yes, my daughter can pet that belly!

Our green-eyed Cat
Catty- Cat insists on more petting. She's so pretty, who could refuse?


Happy Cat
Happy Cat, happy girl. 


Do you have a Wordless Wednesday post up this week too? Leave me a comment with your blogs name and I'll stop by to check it out. 

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Productivity increases in my home office thanks to Pilot

Monday, September 22, 2014


As any small business owner will attest, keeping track of all the moving parts of a business can be daunting. As a WAHM with two small businesses to manage, I’m here to tell you that the most valued tool in my home office is a working pen. Yes, the lowly, highly under-rated and often sought after pen. 

When Shoplet.com sent out an email to their review bloggers asking if we’d like to receive a complimentary set of Pilot pens and highlighters to review, I think I broke some sort of response speed record letting them know I’d be happy to share my thoughts on the new Pilot products. All opinions and doodles shared below are completely my own.

Pens and highlighters are essential tools in any office or home, but my stash seems to dwindle as family members pick them up and forget to return them. Now that I’ve handed each person living here a brand new Pilot B2P pen, I’m hopeful my pens will stay on my desk and kitchen message station. 

We received these Pilot products:

Pilot  #pens #highlighter




I love all the Pilot products sent to me. I have fun writing my daughters notes using the various colored pens and erasable highlighter, but my favorite pen of all has got to be the Frixion clicker erasable gel pen !


Things to do list with #Pilot Pens

I love how smoothly this pen glides over the paper. I love the feel of it in my hand. I love that the ink dries quickly so I don’t make smudges as I write.  This is a very important feature for a leftie! And I love that if I do make a mistake, I can simply erase it without ripping the paper.

Well done Pilot!

If you need to re-stock your pen supply, I invite you to head on over to Shoplet.com and check out their office supplies and other promotional items they offer. You can learn more about each type of Pilot pen by clicking on their linked names above.

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Celebrate National Pirates and Pilots day with Mabel's Labels #sponsored

Friday, September 19, 2014

Thank you Mabel's Labels for sponsoring this post. All opinions are love of labels and pirates are 100% my own.


Did you know today is National Pirate's Day? It's true! Did you know that it's the second annual Talk like a Pilot day too? No? Me either on this one- but Mabel's Labels sure did!


Celebrate National Pirates day #Mabel's Labels

Mabel's Labels is offering two great 50% off promotions! For today only, Mabel's Labels is offering 50% off Pirate Ship or Skull 'n' Crossbones Sticky Labels in honor of International Talk Like a Pirate Day. 

Plus, on 9/20, Mabel's Labels is offering 50% off Plane Sticky Labels for their second year of Talk Like a Pilot Day, created by Mabel's Labels. Don't miss your chance to shop these great offers! 


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Sunday Roast Chicken Recipe


In a recent post featuring my new Roaster pan, I said I would share this recipe and I’m happy I’ve found time to today. Maybe it will inspire your Sunday meal plans. Speaking of inspired, my take on this recipe came after I was flipping through an old Bon Appetit magazine. We didn’t have most of their ingredients, but that didn’t stop us! We used what we had on hand and loved the results. Feel free to add your own flair and substitute ingredients as needed.


Sunday Roast Chicken #recipe #homecooked meals


Sunday Roast Chicken – serves 4


Ingredients:

  • 8-10) small red potatoes- well scrubbed and pierced with knife to allow steaming during cooking.
  • 2-4) medium Parsnips- well scrubbed, quartered lengthwise.  
  • 5-6) medium carrots- well scrubbed, quartered lengthwise.  
  • 1-2) medium onions- peeled, quartered.
  • 5-6) Creamini Mushrooms, washed, dried.
  • 2) tablespoons cooking oil of choice to coat pan and rack.
  • 3) tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature.
  • 2) tablespoons finely chopped fresh sage or 1 tablespoon dried sage.
  • 7) sprigs fresh Rosemary, dried.
  • 1) 4-5 pound whole organic (if possible) chicken- patted dry.
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt or salt of choice (we used fresh ground pink Himalayan rock salt).
  • 1 tablespoon dried Sage.
  • ¼ teaspoon ground dried Thyme.
  • ¼ teaspoon ground dried Marjoram.
  • ¼ cup water or dry white wine.

fresh vegetables and Rosemary



Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 400° F
  • Layer bottom of rack with sprigs of fresh Rosemary if desired. Layer cut vegetables on rack.
  • (insert veggie rack pic)
  • Pour ¼ cup water in bottom of roaster.
  • Place chicken in center of vegetables.
  • Mix butter and sage together in small bowl. (micro-wave butter to soften as needed.)
  • Using a basting brush or fingertips, rub sage butter over chicken. Pull skin off breast meat and spread sage butter there if desired. 
  • Use the rest of the sage butter on vegetables.
  • Sprinkle salt, pepper and other dried herbs over chicken.
  • Roast chicken and vegetables in 400 ° F oven for 15 minutes. 
  • Reduce oven temperature to 375 ° F, continue roasting until thermometer inserted in chicken reads 165 ° F and veggies are tender. 
  • Stir and baste once. 
  • Add Creamini mushrooms after 45 minutes cooking time. 
  • Cook for approximately an hour and 15 minutes. Check chicken for doneness right before the hour mark and plan cooking time accordingly.
  • Once chicken and vegetables are done, transfer vegetables to serving bowl, cover to keep warm. 
  • Tilt chicken allowing juices to flow from chicken, 
  • Put chicken on cutting surface. 
  • Cut chicken and serve with vegetables.


plated Sunday Roast Chicken meal



Enjoy your family meal! If you struggle with getting your kids to eat different vegetables, you should try these. My daughters love them!


Please share in comments- what is your favorite chicken dish?

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Vote Now to Help Kids Have More Fun – One Playspace at a Time #spon

Tuesday, September 16, 2014


As parents, we spend a lot of time discovering creative ways to nurture our children’s curiosity. Luckily, being outdoors provides the perfect landscape, fueling young imaginations and creating endless possibilities for exploration, discovery and creativity. Children’s Claritin hopes to inspire parents to create innovative play spaces in their backyards, and communities.


Children's Claritin #Playspace
Source


Children’s Claritin also believes in the benefits of outdoor activity for children, and wants to help children get the most out of every day! They’re teaming up with KaBOOM!, a national non-profit, to help bring innovative play spaces to communities in need and you can help! By voting, you can help them pick the four community organizations that will receive Imagination Playground™


What’s Imagination Playground™? See imagination at play – watch last year’s winner enjoying Imagination Playground™. 


I invite you to visit ClaritinVoteforPlayspaces.com where you can place your vote and gather play space inspirations for creating your own backyard play space.  While visiting the Children’s Claritin & KaBOOM! Facebook page, you can also:

  • Learn more about the twelve organizations you can vote for receiving Imagination Playground™
  • Download coupon offers
  • Locate a play space near you


 Please Vote now and help pick the four community organizations that will receive Imagination Playground™. You can vote one time per day through 9/26/14Click here for voting rules.


Please share in comments: Does your neighborhood have enough play spaces?




Disclosure: As a member of the Children’s Claritin Mom Crew, I receive product samples and promotional items occasionally to share and use as I see fit. No monetary compensation has taken place and any opinions expressed by me are honest and reflect my actual experience. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. 

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Book lovers visit Nashville during the Southern Festival of books

Saturday, September 13, 2014


Fall is rapidly approaching folks and I for one am happy to see that one of my favorite times of year officially starts in 11 days.  Fall is a fun season, full of great outdoor events and festivals. 

You can find all sorts of festivals to attend- everything from sports and family fun to beer and wine festivals, just head to Google and type in your zip code and festivals.  We were looking for a family event,  when I discovered a unique festival coming to Nashville, TN. in October; a book festival. Yes! A book festival! 

We are a family of avid readers, so how I didn’t know about this festival, which has been held in Nashville since 1989 is beyond me.  Better late than never as the saying goes! I knew I had to extend a warm, southern style invitation to all of you to come visit us in Nashville and check out this festival!



About the Southern Festival of Books: A Celebration of the written word:


poster Southern Festival of books in #Nashville,TN.
Source

Humanities Tennessee's Southern Festival of Books was first held in Nashville on the second full weekend in October in 1989, and has been held annually on the same weekend since then. It is one of the first book festivals of its kind, a true celebration of the written word, and has inspired hundreds of similar book festivals throughout the nation and beyond. 
The festival is free and open to the public. No advance registration or tickets are required. All seating is on a first-come basis.
The dates and times for 2014 Southern Festival of Books are:
Friday, October 10, 2014: 12:00 noon - 5:00 p.m.
Saturday, October 11, 2014: 10:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Sunday, October 12, 2014: 12:00  noon - 5:00 p.m.
To learn more about the Southern Festival of books go here.

This festival isn’t just for adults; there are lots of fun activities for the kids! They will have an opportunity to meet renowned children’s and young adult authors, see favorite book characters, and listen to musicians and storytellers too.
To learn more about the events for children and young adults, including a list of attending authors, go here. 

Fall is a wonderful time to visit Nashville. The heat and humidity of summer are a quickly fading memory and Nashville welcomes you with classic southern charm and hospitality. Plus, by this time of October, you’ll get to see all the pretty fall leaves.
Pretty Fall Leaves #Nashville,TN.

Ready to come to this Festival? You’ll want to check out their handy Plan Your Visit page, which gives you full directions, hotel accommodations suggestions and more. 

Whether you can make it to Nashville or not, I want to wish you and yours a happy, fun fall season. Head on over to Google and find out what is happening in your neighborhood and get out there and have fun!
Please share in comments: Is there a fall fair, festival or event you can’t wait to attend this year?

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Dinner made easy with BrylaneHome Deep Dish Lasagna/Roaster pan

Tuesday, September 9, 2014


Thanks to my sponsor, BrylaneHome, for supplying a free Deep dish Lasagna/Roaster pan to help me write this post today. My love of cooking a family style dinner and my opinions are 100% my own.


Even though it’s officially still summer, we got a much needed break from the heat and humidity last week in the form of glorious rain. This rainy day was the perfect time for me to try out my new deep dish Lasagna/Roaster pan from Brylane Home.

Stainless steel deep dish Lasagna Pan/Roaster #BrylaneHome


I didn’t have the needed time or ingredients to make my homemade sauce for Lasagna, so I opted instead to make a family favorite- my Sunday Roast Chicken. I couldn’t wait to give this Stainless Steel beauty of a pan a try.

I really like that this set comes with a removable footed rack for roasting and look how deep it is! Four inches deep insures you won’t have any bubble overs and allows you plenty of room to make a large family style meal.  The plastic lid and heavy duty spatula make this a perfect set for community functions and family events too.  Just cook, cover and go.

I lightly oiled the rack and sides of the pan to start. Then I lined up my veggies on the rack. The veggies stayed in place nicely on the rack.


Roaster rack lined with carrots,onions,parsnips #BrylaneHome

I could have easily doubled this recipe to feed a family of 8 to 10, that’s how big this pan is!


Next, I seasoned my chicken and veggies, added some aromatic herbs and was ready for the true test of any RoasterHow well and evenly does it cook?


Sunday Chicken Dinner ready to go in oven #BrylaneHome


The house was full of the heavenly scent of my Sunday Roast Chicken and my family kept visiting the kitchen to ask when dinner would be done.  After a final check of my chicken’s temperature and a quick fork check of the veggies, I am happy to report that the BrylaneHome Deep Dish Lasagna/Roaster pan performed perfectly! 

Cooking time was the same as my other Roaster at one and half hours and the chicken turned out moist and tender, while the veggies were done just the way my family likes them.


Doesn’t this look good? I’ll be sharing my Sunday Roast Chicken recipe soon!


Perfect Sunday Chicken from BrylaneHome #Roaster #dinner


Our Sunday dinner was a success and now that fall’s cooler temperatures are drawing near, I’m sure I will be putting my new deep dish roaster/pan to good use. My family has already said they can’t wait for a deep dish version of my Lasagna.

 If you are in the mood to start fall cooking again and need a good deep dish pan, I invite you to check out the deep dish Lasagna/Roaster pan from Brylane Home which is currently on sale. While there, be sure to request a catalog


Please share in comments: What is your favorite fall  dinner recipe?

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Dark Hope: Book One of the Archangel Prophecies Review #DarkHopeBook

Thursday, September 4, 2014



By Tera Kinsman

Dark Hope by Monica McGurk is a YA fiction book about Hope Carmichael, a teenager who was abducted as a child. Her father had raised her in a religious, overprotective environment, until she was 15. Hope’s mother gained custody, and she finally has a chance to be a normal teenager in Atlanta, Georgia.



Dark Hope #YA



At school, Hope makes her first real friend, Michael. He’s every girl’s dream, and Hope can’t believe he even noticed her. But there is more to him than meets the eye, and strange things begin to happen to Hope. She is dragged into an ancient conflict, centered on her.

Hope is the Bearer of the Key, the one destined to open the Gate of Heaven and unleash the fury of the Fallen Ones, a fate worse than Armageddon, unless Michael and Hope find a way to stop them.


I actually found myself liking this book. It wasn’t what I would’ve normally picked out for myself, especially considering the length of my TBR (to be read) list. I thought it would be overdone, another cheesy gothic romance. But the plot was actually exciting, and it opened my eyes to the sinister and disturbing underworld of human trafficking, which plays a major role in the events of the story. 

The romance isn’t insta-love or any of the other usual YA themes. While Michael and Hope quickly fall into “like” with each other, their relationship is complicated. Hope is never sure whether she can really trust Michael, or if she is just a pawn in a battle much bigger than herself. She wants to be close to him, to pretend like they’re just friends (or more than friends) back in Atlanta, but her own inner voice, and that of her Guardian Angel, Henri, keeps her doubting. 

Dark Hope is the first of a trilogy, so I think it will be interesting to see how their relationship changes in the next books.

A portion of the profits from the book will be donated to organizations to combat human trafficking, especially sexual trafficking of minors, which is super cool. 

To learn more about Monica McGurk, please visit her website  or follow her on her social channels.

Monica’s Twitter
Monica’s Pinterest
Monica’s Facebook


Please share in comments: What is your favorite YA book?


Disclosure: I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own. Our thanks to Clever Girls for sponsoring this post today. While we received a copy of Dark Hope and compensation, all opinions are 100% our own.  Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be a good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.


"  






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Slap ‘Appy- Free Clean Master phone boost

Tuesday, September 2, 2014


Hello September! I’m so glad you are here because that means one of my favorite seasons is approaching.  Fall!  I adore fall and all that this season provides us. 


Fall Flowers

  • Mums and colorful leaves
  • Pies and casseroles
  • Football and bonfires
  • Boots and sweaters

Fall is a stellar season for so many happy out- door activities and is also a good time to clean.  Wait, did I just pop the pretty fall bubble by mentioning cleaning? 

Yes, I did. House, car, deck, porch, it’s that wonderful time of year again to get your house in order before the Holidays. Before I start sharing those kind of cleaning tips, let’s start with something that is with you no matter the season and could probably use a good cleaning right now- your smartphone.

We are an Android home, so most all the apps I share here will be Android friendly. Such is the case for this amazing cleaning tool- The Clean Master Phone Boost. My husband downloaded and installed it on my phone when he got tired of hearing me say my phone was running slow again. 


Clean Master Phone Boost App

About Clean Master App:
“Simple, fast and accurate, Clean Master is the world’s most downloaded Android cleaner, speed boost and antivirus app, designed to help you reclaim storage, boost memory, enhance speed, and secure your device against malicious apps and vulnerabilities”.


Running Clean Master is super easy and quick. Every time I unlock my home screen their a little percentage icon that shows if I need to give my phone a quick cleaning. If the percentage is up over 50%, I just click the broom and the Clean Master app does the rest.


Clean Master app in action




This app is speedy quick! It shows me which files and apps are slowing up my phone (usually Instagram and photo gallery) and asks me if I want to remove junk files. 


Clean Master cleaning up app's


Yes, I do want to remove junk files, Clean Master, thanks for asking.


Clean Master cleaning up my smartphone

And just like that, my phone is clean again. You can clean your phone in less than 30 seconds, or do a more in-depth cleaning as time permits.

I highly recommend this app for your smartphone too. Head on over to Google Play and download your free copy today.


Please share in comments- what smartphone app do you use most often?

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