May 2017 | My WAHM Plan

Archive for May 2017

Two unique ways the USO supports military families

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

For countless people, Memorial Day weekend is the unofficial start to summer. My family is among those numbers.  This weekend was especially joyous for us as our oldest daughter’s high school graduation ceremony was on Saturday morning. Our weekend was filled to the brim with activity, some major milestones (like graduating!) and some more routine, like having a cookout and buying flowers for our porches. 

getting porches ready for summer

It wasn’t until my husband hung our new flag, that I stopped to pay my respects again for the people who died while serving in our countries armed forces. I decided then to write about the two unique and new to me ways I found the USO supports military families. 

USO logo
The United Services Organization, most commonly known as the USO, is a nonprofit organization that provides programs, services and live entertainment to United States service members and their families. 

Their website states their mission as: 

 “The USO strengthens America’s military service members by keeping them connected to family, home and country, throughout their service to the nation.”

One of the biggest supporters of the USO in our time was the great Bob Hope. He started performing for the troops in 1941 and his legacy lives on today. The first unique way the USO supports military families is part of the Bob Hope Reading Program, called Read2Connect.

1. About Read2Connect:

According to the USO’s website, Read2Connect is a program that provides military children with an opportunity to record themselves reading a book of their choice aloud to their family or friends. Then, the recording is packed with a handwritten note and mailed to the loved one so they can watch their military child friend or relative read them a story.

As an avid reader and supporter of literacy programs, I was happy to learn about this program and hear about it from a 13 year old, Jordan Scott who is participating in Read2Connect while living in Japan. Here is his video.

If you would like to learn more about this program and see how you can help, go here. Follow the link at the bottom of the article. 

The second unique way the USO is helping military families is with baby showers through their What to Expect Foundation

2. About the What To Expect Foundation: (What to Expect Present Special Delivery): 

“For the USO and the What to Expect Foundation, the goal of each Special Delivery shower is the same: Educate and empower military moms and foster a sense of community where it might be needed most – far from home and family."

"These things are important to moms-to-be, which is why the USO and the What to Expect Foundation teamed up in 2013 to host baby showers for military moms. Heidi Murkoff, who established the What to Expect Foundation in 1997, serves as the host for each shower, answering questions, signing copies of her best-selling book, “What to Expect When You’re Expecting,” and posing for photos with expectant mothers.

You can learn more about this program and see cute babies, by watching this video. 

If you would like to learn more about this program and help out moms to be, go here

How you can help:

I learned that the USO is a well-respected and valuable resource for military families and there are so many ways we can plug in and help, globally, nationally or in our own communities. If my two unique ways of helping don’t speak to you, I invite you to visit the and check out all the programs they offer hereI’m sure you’ll find a program that is just right for you, even if that means a monetary donation rather than a time commitment. 

My family and I wish to extend our sincere gratitude for all the men and women who are serving our country now, or who have in the past. I’m hopeful that I can keep the giving spirit alive and well within myself and my family long past this Memorial Day

Please share in comments: Are you a military family? Do you utilize any of the USO programs? 


Host a fun and tasty movie night with G.H. Cretors popped corn

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Our schedules have been fairly non-stop this month with both of our daughter’s graduating from either middle or high school. When we do get to spend time together at home, one of our favorite ways to spend family time is watching movies.

Host a fun and tasty movie night with G.H. Cretors popped corn

Since both our girls are in their teens, our genre selection has become more varied, but one thing remains constant. Every movie night needs snacks and our family loves popcorn! When the nice folks at G.H. Cretors asked if I’d like to host a movie night, receive their complimentary movie night kit and try their popped corn I immediately said yes, of course! 

My thanks to them for the tasty treats, the Oscar nominated movies Arrival and Moonlight, the cozy blanket to snuggle with and the “obsessively delicious" popped corn! While I did receive products to facilitate today's post, all opinions are my own. 

When the company representative contacted me, I have to confess, the name G.H. Cretors didn’t ring a bell, so I followed the link she provided to learn more.  I’d love to share their story with you now. 

About G.H. Cretors and how they got their tag line Obsessively Good

G.H. Cretors logo

G.H. Cretors history dates back to 1893 with Charles Cretors, confectioner and inventor, who unveiled the first popcorn machine at the Chicago World’s Fair. Their artisanal popcorn is made in small batches using only the highest quality ingredients which makes it the perfect snack for at home movie nights. Whether watching a new film or an old favorite, nothing pairs better than a bowl of obsessively delicious popcorn. 

Why Obsessively Good?

Host a fun and tasty movie night with G.H. Cretors popped corn

Great-great granddaughter, Claire Cretors, popped the first batch of “obsessively delicious” flavors four decades later, to what we know today as G.H. Cretors Popped Corn. After trying their Just the Cheese Corn and The Mix (cheddar cheese and caramel), we wholeheartedly agree with Claire!  G.H. Cretors snacks are so good and a bag or two can get gobbled up quickly! You can feel good about serving this snack because they use Non-GMO popcorn and other Non-GMO ingredients whenever possible, and has a line of organic offerings as well. 

You have your choice of nine flavors which include:

  • The Mix
  • Organic Chile Jalapeno White Cheddar
  • Organic Dill Pickle
  • Just the Cheese
  • Just the Caramel
  • Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Organic White Cheddar
  • Organic Honey Butter Kettle-corn
  • Organic Salted Butter 

Yum! All these delightful sounding flavors have my mouth watering. Just the smell of popping corn is enough to get my taste buds ready. We are a nation that loves our pop-corn for sure. Check out these fun popcorn facts and let me know in comments how many you already knew.

Fun Facts about Popcorn from G.H. Cretors:

  • Americans eat an estimated 17 billion quarts of popcorn every year!
  • Nearly 70% of popcorn is eaten at home.
  • Popcorn can pop up to three feet in the air!
  • Popcorn is the official snack of the State of Illinois, where G.H. Cretors is made.

Host a fun and tasty movie night with G.H. Cretors popped corn

We’ve watched and loved Arrival now and once we can squeeze another family movie night in our schedule, we are looking forward to watching Moonlight. I’m asking my family to nominate their favorite G.H. Cretors flavor.  

I’ll be able to find them easily because they can be found nationwide in Walgreens, Target, Rite Aid, BJs and more. For full retail locations near you, check out the store locator here and be sure to tag them on social channels once you start munching using hashtag #GHCretorsMovieNight .

Instagram: @ghcretors
Twitter: @GHCretors 

Make time for movie night this summer:

The school year is officially done for the year as of this afternoon. By Memorial Day, we’ll be in full summertime mode where our pace slows down and we savor and enjoy out time together so why not host a fun and tasty movie night at your house and grab a bag or two of G.H. Cretors for movie time munching?

Please share in comments: Which popped corn flavor choice from the list above would you try first?


Independent film Urban Hymn movie review

Saturday, May 20, 2017

We love watching movies from a variety of genres, everything from Sci-Fi to Disney animations we will watch with an open mind.   In my opinion, having an open mind is necessary when reviewing any movie; most especially when the film is a un- rated independent film like Urban Hymn.  Thanks to my partnership with Level 33 Entertainment, I received a complimentary early screener copy of Urban Hymn to facilitate today’s review. No further compensation was provided. All opinions are my own.

Urban Hymn film review

About Urban Hymn:

“Urban Hymn follows a troubled teenage girl, Jamie, who possesses an amazing singing voice, and an inspiring and unconventional social worker, Kate, who encourages her to use it.”

Written by: Nick Moorcroft - Directed By: Michael Caton-Jones – Produced By: Andrew Berg, Neil Chordia, John Sachs and Daniel Toland


Shirley Henderson (Harry Potter fans know her as Moaning Myrtle),  Steven Mackintosh, Ian Hart,  Shaun Parkes, Letitia Wright, Caroline O’Neill, Isabella Laughland, Jack McMullen, Katie Redford

Urban Hymn movie review

As I mentioned earlier, I had an open mind, along with a fair amount high hopes for this film especially when I saw all the film festival awards Urban Film has already won. 


  • OFFICIAL SELECTION - Toronto International Film Festival
  • OFFICIAL SELECTION - Busan International Film Festival
  • WINNER Audience Award - International Young Audience Film Festival
  • WINNER Organizer’s Prize - International Young Audience Film Festival
  • WINNER Golden Gryphon Generator +18 - Giffoni Film Festival

My Thoughts:

Raw, edgy, real.  Within the first three minutes of Urban Hymn I was questioning what I was getting ready to allow my 14 and 18 year old daughter to watch. There is language and scenes that depict inner city streets and inner city teens running amuck.  

Questions like should I turn this off? Should I watch it by myself?  ran through my head and straight out of my mouth, but we all agreed to watch the film to see where it led. I agreed because, folks, you can’t keep your teens in a bubble forever. Who better for them to see this side of life than with their mom?

Urban Hymn, classified as an Independent drama, music film is just that, full of drama and music and feels. Lots and lots of feels!  Yes, it is a coming of age film, but don’t expect Breakfast Club or even Mean Girls vibes.  

This film takes you right in to the world of some seriously troubled youth living at a home for wayward children. Beyond the hitting, smoking, yelling, drinking, sex, drugs, and loud club music, we meet Jamie, (played by Letitia Wright) who loves to sing along to her dead mom’s old soul and blues record collection, (the only thing she had from her mom, who died when Jamie was just 6). And her partner in crime (literally) and best friend Leanne, (played by Isabella Laughland) who has one bad temper and a possessive streak when it comes to Jamie. That temper which morphs into crazy rages is unleashed on anyone who Leanne feels wrongs her or Jamie, including new case worker Kate.

As the film progresses you find yourself understanding that all of the main characters are hurting and broken in their own way. Kate (played by Shirley Henderson) sees Jamie’s talent and offers a helping hand and in so doing, changes the course of all of their lives. Kate is trying to help and forget, Jamie is trying to change while not losing sight of where she comes from, and Leann, well, she is simply trying to survive. If I had to rate this movie, I would give it an R rating.

 Here is a trailer for you. 

Urban Hymn opened in theaters and on demand 5/12/17. You can learn more about the movie by visiting Urban Hymn on Facebook here  and by following Level 33 Entertainment on Twitter here.

My Take Away: 

This is a gritty, powerful film that will have you feeling multiple emotions and deals with very real life and death situations, so I wouldn’t suggest you going to the theater or streaming it if you are not in an emotionally good place.  

Urban Hymn movie review

If you are ready believe in human kindness, cry at life’s unfairness and rejoice with a choir of signers, go see this movie!  I’m so glad we got to watch it. The acting was superb and they truly brought their characters to life!  It is hard to end of film on a happy and sad note all at once, but Urban Hymn does just that. 

Please share in comments: What was the last Independent film you watched? What drew you to it?

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Organize your closet in an afternoon with simple accessories

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Spring cleaning continues this month at Casa Kinsman and while I feel like I’m making headway in some areas (hello recycling bins filled to the brim!), I’ve just started on closets. Oh, closet organization, how I avoid you, until now. When my friends over at Tidy Living ask if I would like to work with them on their May Madness spring cleaning sale, I happily said yes because I knew I couldn’t let my closets stay messy. With the help of two cool clothing accessories I received from today’s sponsor, I was able to organize the messiest closet in one afternoon. Here’s how I did it. 

This is a sponsored post on behalf of Tidy Living. I received information/product to facilitate my review as well as a promotional item to thank me for my participation.

Organize your closet in an afternoon with a garment rack from  #ad

1. Block out enough time:

To take your closet from clutter to clean, the first and maybe hardest step is blocking out the necessary time. It is imperative that you allow at least an hour to devote to this chore. The more clothing and accessories you have, the more time you’ll need. I blocked out an afternoon. 

2. Pick your battles:

Before you start pulling items out of the closet, stop and ask yourself what is bugging you the most.

  • Is it that you can’t step in to your closet because it’s stuffed all the way to the door?
  • Is it that your clothes are in piles and towers in front of the closet door or on other furniture nearby?
  • Is your source of stress wrinkles from not hanging clothing properly or at all?
  • Is it all the STUFF you own? (Shoes, purses, belts, scarves, backpacks, gym bags luggage).

3. Start with one item:

Now that you’ve identified which battle you’d like to tackle, just start. Yes, just start by moving one piece of clothing or item. It will look different for every closet and every battle. Start by making a clear work area. If that means moving a pile in front of the actual closet, do it. Do you need to move boxes, bins, luggage to walk in to your closet? Do it. Set them in the hallway if need be. The point is to see the closet and what you have to work with. 

When I started with my closet organization in my daughter’s room, I quickly realized her clothes were not on hangers, shelves or drawers because she was trying multiple pieces to create her look and style for the next day. Enter the first simple sanity saving closet accessory

style your look easily with a single tier garment rack #ad

3. Utilize clothing accessories and organizers inside and outside of closet:

The single tier garment rack is a handy clothing accessory for those who like to pull together their outfits and looks ahead of time. This rack was shipped to me speedy quick from and is on sale during their May madness sale where you can save up to 70% off this month, plus, you get free shipping to all U.S and Canada residences. You’ll save even more on multiple purchases too. Save 10% off any two purchases, or 15% off any three. 

Sometimes to better organize the inside of a closet, you have to think outside for clever storage options. Now my fashionista can easily style her clothes and accessories, all the way down to her shoes by utilizing a small space just to the side of her closet. The rack has space at the bottom to hold a shoe organizer and is specious enough that you can even hang your purse and belts. She really likes how it lends coolness to her room too. 

4. Don’t re-launder clean clothes that are wrinkled:

While working in my daughter’s closet, I found countless tops I knew had been washed but never worn, but they were way too wrinkled to wear.  If you are tired of seeing clothes re-enter the laundry room because they were scooped up off the floor, do yourself a favor and invest in a foldable drying rack.

air dry delicate clothing on a foldable drying rack #ad

This rack is on sale too at and is going to be a lifesaver for me with two teen daughters! I set up the folding rack in their bathroom, gathered up items I knew I had recently laundered, (don’t be afraid to do a sniff test) and tossed them in a laundry hamper. 

Next I grabbed my handy water bottle from my laundry room, (water is easier to use and cheaper than using wrinkle re-leasers) and in under 5 minutes all that laundry was spritzed with water and drying so it can be put away properly. 

You're done!

With a little planning, patience, a few simple closet accessories and an afternoon, I was able to transform a closet into a usable, organized space. I’ll be tackling more closets as the month continues. 

Please share in comments: Which closet have you been avoiding organizing in your home? 


This post is not associated with nor endorsed by Facebook, Twitter, or any other social channel. My WAHM Plan was compensated/and or received promotional products to share this information.

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Color of the Month - May 2017 - Fern Green

Friday, May 12, 2017

May is a beautiful month for anyone who loves nature. Flowers are blooming, birds are singing, bees are buzzing and there is greenery everywhere and in a myriad of shades to adore. 

I have a fantastic view of my front yard down to our pond from my office chair and I can count at least six different shades of green. It was hard to narrow down a particular shade, but after scanning my photos, I chose Fern Green as my May color of the month.

Blackberry bush with fern green leaves and white bloom

This photo of my Blackberry bush with the pretty leaves and white bloom was my inspiration for this months color choice. While I love flowers and blooms, it was the leaves in all their perfection I liked most.

Here is my monthly Pinterest collaboration board I've put together to show you how to use, wear, and accessorize with Fern Green.  I hope you enjoy it! 

Are we pin buddies? Follow me and comment here with your user name so I can follow you and if you have a cool pin that would fit in with this months theme, be sure to let me know in comments and I'll add it to the board.

I plan on spending as much time as possible outside with my family this weekend enjoying all the pretty greenery. I hope your weekend is filled with all the things that make you happy.

Please share in comments: What is your favorite pin from this months Pinterest board?


A tote bag that gives hope this Mother’s Day

Monday, May 8, 2017

Mother’s Day is almost here and I just had to share a great gift idea that I recently discovered while working my other job as an Avon Representative. I know most of you have heard of this iconic beauty brand, but do you know the giving side of Avon? The Avon Foundation for Women launched its Speak out against Domestic Violence program back in 2004.  One of its main pillars is to fund shelters across the United States that provide safe spaces for women and children in imminent danger where they can heal emotionally and physically, move toward self-sufficiency, and learn positive coping skills.

Avon Reps at Sanctuary for Families New York

“One of Avon Foundation’s grantees is Sanctuary forFamilies (Sanctuary), New York City’s largest service provider for survivors of domestic violence and their children. At an event on April 27, held at Sarah Burke House, Sanctuary’s 58-family shelter in the Bronx, local-area Avon Representatives and the Avon Foundation for Women presented a $5,000 grant to Sanctuary, marking more than $675,000 donated to the organization by the Avon Foundation for Women during a nearly 20-year philanthropic partnership.”

This donation is a powerful message of hope, especially coming from Avon and their local mom bosses. It makes me so proud to be a part of this great company. It makes me want to work harder, stand taller as an Avon Representative and to find ways to give more in my own community.  

A tote bag that gives hope this Mother’s Day:

A tote bag that give hop this Mother's Day #Avon

“This donation coincides with the launch of Avon’sBranching Out Empowerment Tote for Mother’s Day 2017, a limited-edition fundraising product honoring domestic violence survivors and created through Avon’s special collaboration with Sanctuary for Families’ Children’s Collaborative Art Project.” Christine Jaworsky, Director of the Avon Foundation’s leading Speak Out Against Domestic Violence Program shared that the painting features a large, colorful tree with many branches – symbolizing the children’s family tree, filled with hope, healing and growth

I absolutely LOVE that the art work of children currently living at Sanctuary was used on this tote. It makes its message even more powerful and I will think of the Mother's who were brave enough to leave and seek sanctuary for themselves and their children each time I carry it. 

How you can help:

Funds raised from the new Empowerment Tote will be donated by Avon to the Avon Foundation to be able to provide more grants for more programs that provide critical services for women and their families. The easiest way to help would be to purchase the Empowerment tote from your local Avon Representative. I am a firm believer in helping where you live! If you don’t currently have a local Avon Representative, just go to and use their search tools. 

Empowerment tote by Avon for Mother's Day

If you are reading this and I’m your local or online Avon Representative. You can use my link purchase the Empowerment tote. It should arrive to you in time for Mother's Day if purchased asap!  Please note, I will earn a small percentage on this sale by you using my link here, but $3.60 of every sale goes to Avon grants and programs! 

I sincerely thank you for blessing me with your purchase, which also blesses others and isn’t that a beautiful Mother’s Day gift?

I hope you find this information helpful. I’ve felt a pull to share more Avon related posts with you here on my blog. I’ve been with Avon a year and a half and I feel it would be fun and helpful if I shared a glimpse into my direct sales business here since it is a big part of my work at home mom plan.

I wish all Moms a very Happy Mother’s Day!

Please share in comments: Have you ever purchased an Avon product? If yes, what was it?


This giveaway is not associated with nor endorsed by Facebook, Twitter, or any other social channel. My WAHM Plan owner is an Independent Avon Representative and may receive monetary compensation if you purchase the above item. 



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