On a recent mild Saturday afternoon, a group of happy tweens arrived at our home to help my daughter celebrate her 12th birthday.  They were full of energy and giggles right from the start!

The hostess ready to greet her guests #Disneyside #celebration

The birthday “Princess” was ready to greet her guests and make them feel welcome. For twenty minutes, we met girls and parents and exchanged pleasantries as one should. All went according to plan. That would be the last time I could say that with any real confidence! The great thing about tweens is their spontaneity!  So my first tip to hosting an epic tween birthday party is: Plan to not follow your plan exactly.

Show your #Disneyside #celebration MyWAHMPlan.com
My next tip is to pick a theme that has a lot of wiggle room. While my daughter liked the “idea” of a Disney Villain style party, she didn’t want it to be over the top with decorations.  We went with simple purple, green, gray and black pieces and accessories. The clear favorite was the villain banner! Hello Ursula, Maleficent and Darth Vader!

#Disneyside Villain themed #party banner

After the girls had played outside for a while they came in ready for a snack. We had lots of on hand, but before I could get a photo to share- these girls descended upon the table with an appetite only a tween boy could rival! Which leads me to my next tween party tip: don’t take too many photos and never snap a picture of a girl with her mouth full of food! So, not cool Mom!

#Disneyside #party snack time MyWAHMPlan.com

After the girls hung out listening to music and taking selfies (yes, the irony isn’t lost on me) they went totally off plan and asked to do hair, nails and makeup instead of the crafts and games we had planned. Tip number 3: Roll with it, when at all possible. 

Here's my girls take on Maleficent nails.  We used black, green and purple nail polish- but you could use whatever darker colors you have on hand. I think they turned out nice!

#Maleficent style nails #Disneyside #Villains

Want to create your own Maleficent Villain style nails? Here’s a quick tutorial for you to follow.

Maleficent inspired nail art #Disneyside

After dinner, which included lots of pizza and veggies, the girls were ready to be frightened by playing flashlight tag! Living out in the country like we do, Mother Nature provided us with a very dark and mysterious landscape, perfect to frighten and amaze city dwellers! Maleficent would approve!

girls playing flashlight tag #Disneyside #tween party fun!

While down at our pond, these girls got themselves so scared, they ran back to the house and got us parents involved! It was a perfect, crisp, clear night on our land for flashlight tag. Even with all the flood lights on there was much screaming and laughter.

The hubby and myself have fun playing flashlight tag #Disneyside

I must confess- this older Princess had a lot of fun outside with her Prince.

Tip number 4: Let your tweens explore and push the boundaries just a bit. Their party is the perfect time to allow ghost stories and playing outside after dark (weather permitting) as long as you establish safety guidelines first. Parents, even if you don’t want to be seen- stay close where you can hear and see the kids. 

Later that evening, the girls decided to get to the games and crafts part of our party plan. The clear favorite was the jar painting craft!

Girls just want to have fun! #Disneyside craft time

They laughed and talked and joked and ate and laughed some more until it was movie time.

I cleaned up the happy mess as best I could and left the living room to them. Which leads me to tip number 5: let your child host, but set ground rules before guests arrive. Chat with your son or daughter about snacks and drinks allowed, which movies are approved for watching and what time the party must wind down so kids can go to sleep if you are hosting a sleepover party like we did.

As I was preparing breakfast the next morning, the girls naturally gravitated back to the craft area to finish up their jars before pick up time arrived. That's when I knew this craft project was a winner

morning craft time #Disneyside MyWAHMPlan.com

Even though this was a bit of a messy endeavor, I think all the jars turned out as pretty and as individual as the girls who painted them.

painted keepsake jar #Disneyside party craft

My last tip on throwing an epic tween birthday party, one in which your child and their friends tell you how much fun they had and how Epic! the party was. It's simple- sprinkle your party liberally with laughter and a healthy dose of pixie dust style patience and you too can pull off a great tween party!

Pixie Dust for goodie bags #Disneyside

Disney wants you to show your #Disneyside by being happy and sharing what you love about Disney! Showing your Disneyside will look different for every family and that’s what makes life fun.

#Disneyside #birthday party fun

If you’d like to throw your own #Disneyside at home celebration, head on over to DisneySide Celebrations and check out all the amazing themes, tips, activities and recipes they have. I'm betting you'll be able to pull of an epic party too!

Please share in comments: What is your favorite Disney Villain character and why?

Disclosure: My thanks to Disneyside for providing us with a box of Villain worthy goodies to use how we chose to show our Disneyside. No compensation was given or wanted. We are happy to show our Disneyside as often as possible.

Thanks to Viva Italia Days at Publix: Hunt’s Tomatoes, Progresso™ Brand Products, Kraft Parmesan Cheese, Pillsbury™ Refrigerated Breads, Betty Crocker™ Cookies for sponsoring today's discussion. All opinions and love of cooking are my own.

How many times has this happened to you? You’ve forgotten to lay out the chicken for dinner, again - or worse, you remembered to defrost the meat, but your kids veto what you’ve got planned for dinner. There’s an uprising over “another” stir fry; like you’ve been trying to feed them this for days on end. 

What’s a mom to do? Raid the pantry, of course!

#PublixVivaItalia raid the pantry dinner

This recipe was inspired by the notion of always having a plan B dinner on hand for those nights when life throws you a curve-ball. Thanks to Publix, it’s super easy to plan ahead and make this tasty recipe! Your family won’t believe you got this meal on the table in under an hour! 

Cheesy Chicken Pasta Bake #recipe on MyWAHMPlan.com

Cheesy Chicken Pasta Bake – serves 8


1 – 18 oz. can Progresso Creamy Mushroom Soup
1- 14.5 oz. can Hunts Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes w/ Garlic
2- 10 oz. can Chicken Breast Meat in water
1 box Rigatoni or pasta of your choice, raid your pantry!
1 cup Kraft 6 cheese Italian blend shredded cheese
3/4 cup Kraft shredded Parmesan cheese
2- tablespoons Canola or other cooking oil (for casserole dish and pasta water)
¼ cup water (I use pasta water)
Salt, pepper Italian style dried herbs to taste.


Boil pasta to al dente as per box directions. About nine minutes.
Preheat oven to 350° F
Grease casserole dish.
Using a spider or slotted spoon, pull al dente pasta from water and spread evenly in casserole dish.
Add salt, pepper and Italian style dried herbs to pasta.
Add ¼ cup pasta water.
Mix in seasonings.
Next, add all canned ingredients starting with creamy mushroom soup, then tomatoes, then chicken and mix.
Add the Kraft 6 cheese Italian blend shredded cheese, and lightly fold in to casserole.
Top with Kraft Parmesan cheese.
Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until cheese is bubbling.

Cheesy Chicken Pasta Bake dinner MyWAHMPlan.com
Dinner is served!

Serve with a garden salad and Pillsbury French bread loaf, which can be cooked at the same oven temperature as the Cheesy Chicken Pasta Bake. Serve Betty Crocker Double Chocolate Chunk cookies for dessert, if time allows you to bake them ahead of time.  Enjoy!

More easy recipe inspiration:


By shopping #PublixVivaItalia days at your local Publix from 2/19 until 3/4, you can save up to $7.00 and have this meal ready in a jiffy, just by raiding your pantry.
Use these links, starting with the Plan and Save at Publix link. 

Then save on:
  1. Progresso And Pillsbury Coupons
  2. Save $0.30 When You Buy ONE Bread Crumbs, Beans, Broth, Vinegar, Seafood Sauce Or Artichoke Hearts
  3. Save 50¢ Off Any Three(3) Hunt's® Tomato Paste (6 Oz. Or 12 Oz.)
  4. Save 50¢ Off Any Three(3) Hunt's® 8 Oz. Sauce AND One (1) Mueller's® 16 Oz. Spaghetti

Win it!
PayPal #giveaway MyWAHMPlan.com

Thanks to the nice sponsors of #PublixVivaItalia days, one lucky reader will win a $10.00 PayPal transfer  to use at Publix, or anywhere you’d like! Entering is easy using the Rafflecopter form below. 


Prize will be fulfilled by My WAHM Plan and transferred within 48 hours of winner supplying correct PayPal account email  address. No purchase necessary to enter. One entry per blog please! If you have entered and won this prize on another blog, please remove yourself by emailing me at 4lkinsatgmaildotcom upon notification of win. One winner will be randomly selected using the Raffle Copter tools random selector and notified via email. Once notified, the winner will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest or Google. Void where prohibited.

Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I was so excited when I was selected by Makobi Scribe to write a post and receive a free bathroom product from Danze.  All opinions and love of home improvement are my own.

Beautiful, updated shower from Danze.com

Since buying our 90’s ranch style home in rural middle Tennessee, I have dreamed of updating the bathrooms! Sure, we’d love to gut them and bring in all new products from floor to ceiling and we will get to that one day- but for now, the quickest and most affordable way to update our baths is with new bathroom faucets and fixtures. 

Our master bathroom is in need of a new shower head and I found one I love at Danze.comSince all our fixtures and faucets are in brushed Nickel, I was immediately drawn to the Sunflower 6 inch round single function shower head in brushed Nickel. It's available in Chrome and oil brushed Bronze as well. Maybe it was the name that drew me to this shower head since I’m an avid gardener, or maybe it was simply my love of clean lines and functionality.

#Sunflower shower head from Danze.com

The Sunflower sounds like a perfect match for us because it offers easy to clean jets to prevent mineral build-up (a huge plus in our hard water area), and a Brass ball joint for easy and smooth angle adjustment of shower head, which comes in very handy when you are shorter than your tall husband! It’s an affordable option that will last a long time because of its metal construction too. 

I’m excited to give this shower head a try and have my eye on their Cape Anne  bathroom faucet set too. 

Cape Anne faucet set from Danze.com

If you are in need of a bathroom update, I suggest starting with your bathroom faucets and fixtures. I invite you to learn more about Danze, a leading brand in fine kitchen and bath products for home improvement. 

Visit their website; check out their products and get inspired guides on their website and Pinterest to help you plan and dream.

Please share in comments: What is your favorite bathroom faucet and fixture finish? Chrome, Brushed Nickel or oil rubbed Bronze?
Thank you to Family Christian for sponsoring today’s review and giveaway. All opinions and love of crafting are my own.

Rain, sleet, snow, ice.  Four words nobody wants to hear, but much of the south has been hit by a winter storm the likes of which we haven’t seen in many years. And those words are still in our weather outlook for at least 24 hours.  Thankfully, we had ample notice of our impending snow days, so we stocked up on necessities.  One of the necessities for this work-at-home mom is craft supplies! Nothing keeps my girls happy and engaged more than a new bunch of craft supplies.

Thank you card #craft #paper #stamps #pens

We’d had the opportunity to shop at FamilyChristian.com a couple of weeks ago and I’d made a point of putting up the order for just such an occasion, and I’m really glad I did. Like me, you might think of Family Christian book stores for Christian based books, like the newest Max Lucado book, Before Amen (which I highly recommend), or their awesome selection of Willow Tree figurines; but their craft section shouldn’t be missed! 

 Bright Card stock MyWAHMPlan.com

My youngest recently celebrated her birthday, so she decided to make personalized thank-you cards with the cool card stock and stamp set she got from our online shopping trip.

The great thing about the card stock we chose, besides its vibrant color choices, is the way the pad form keeps the sheets inside from getting damaged. Plus, the edge around the top cover shows the assortment of colors for you to easily find the color family you want. The texture of the card stock has a woven linen look, which makes it perfect for cards.

Princess stamp set MyWAHMPlan.com

After my daughter chose her paper, she got out all the stamps and pencils from this awesome princess stamping set from Melissa & Doug and set to work making her own unique thank-you cards. 

stamping craft time MyWAHMPlan.com

I love how each one turned out a bit different and how much fun my birthday girl had making her own cards. Clean-up and storage was a breeze, because all the stamps and pencils fit right back in their wooden tray. 

sew cute owl kit MyWAHMPlan.com

My oldest daughter had picked out an owl sewing craft kit that is beyond cute! The Sew Cute kit includes everything you need to make two fun and easy owl projects!  She set to work by familiarizing herself with all the supplies provided in her kit. 

owl craft kit supplies MyWAHMPlan.com

This is an easy and fun craft she can do in an afternoon. I think she’s going to give one of the cute owl friends to one of her friends for an upcoming birthday gift too. 

I love how our snow day craft projects not only made my girls’ day happy, but how they will be spreading that happiness to their friends as well. That’s the great thing about doing crafts and D.I.Y. projects; you usually wind up sharing that love with others. 

How about I share some crafting love with you by giving you a chance to win a $10.00 gift certificate to shop at FamilyChristian.com

#FamilyChristian logo MyWAHMPlan.com

Win it!

Thanks to Family Christian, one lucky reader will win a $10.00 gift certificate to use at any Family Christian store or online! Entering is easy using the Rafflecopter form below. 


Open to U.S. residents 18+. No purchase necessary to enter. My WAHM Plan is not responsible for prize fulfillment. One winner will be randomly selected using the Raffle Copter tools random selector and notified via email. Once notified, the winner will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest or Google. Void where prohibited.

Color of the month February 2015 Sunset Pink

in , , , , , , by Linda A Kinsman, Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Oh February, how I want to love you.  You are positively filled with celebration days: National Freedom Day (2/1), Groundhog Day (2/2), Valentine's Day (2/14), Mardi Gras (2/17) Chinese New Year (2/19). 

 All of these days fill my mind with vivid colors just thinking about how I might decorate to celebrate the day- but it's not enough. I want to look out my window and see a colorful landscape, but dear February, you just can't manage that.  

What you can manage and do provide most beautifully is glorious sunrises and sunsets. It was a toss up which I'd pick for this months color, but in the end, the sunsets won.

Here's a photo of a resent sunset in my neck of the woods.

February #sunset pink

And here's my Pinterest board for this month. I hope you like it! 

If you have a sunset photo you'd like me to see, or other pins (family friendly) that boast a sunset pink vibe, let me know in comments and I'll add it to my board.

Stay Warm! 

Please share in comments: Do you prefer sunrises or sunsets and why?

I love giving and receiving cards for the big holidays and celebrations of life and Valentine’s Day is an important one to me.  When Hallmark asked its bloggers if they’d like to receive some complimentary Valentine’s Day cards to review and share our thoughts, I had my virtual hand way up high in the air! My thanks to Hallmark for sponsoring today's post.  All thoughts and love of love are all my own. 

#Hallmark Valentine's Day cards MyWAHMPlan.com

As another Valentine’s Day draws near, I was drawn to the stack of cards I’ve saved from my husband over the course of our 22 year marriage. Countless ones are from Hallmark, so it comes as no surprise that from now until the very last minute on February 14th, Hallmark cards are jumping off store shelves and with very good reason. They speak to us. They help us say what we want to say to all the special people in our lives.

#Hallmark puppy butt! card MyWAHMPlan.com

When I saw this card from Hallmark’s Shoebox collection, I immediately though this would be perfect for my daughter who loves puppies! After reading the sentiment inside the card- I thought, this would also be perfect for any single friends or family in your life because it isn’t about “coupledom” or happily ever after.  It’s just a card that’s funny and says, Hey, I’m thinking about you today.

#Hallmark Beetle Valentine's Day Card MyWAHMPlan.com

Next, I fell in LOVE with the wonderfully artistic and colorful cards by Mirna K. Stubbs for Hallmark’s Studio Ink collection.  If you had asked me about putting a couple of Beetles on a Valentine’s Day card for adults, I would have looked at you like you were crazy talking, but this card works! It’s simple, yet beautiful. It makes me think of far off destinations full of color and promise.  I could see somebody receiving this card and putting it up on their bulletin board, or in a frame to treasure. As a matter of fact, I’m giving this one to my oldest daughter because I saw her positive reaction to it. 

#Hallmark Valentine's Day card collection #MyWAHMPlan.com

While looking through the rest of the collection Hallmark sent me, I would think “Oh, this one is perfect for my husband!” Then, I read another and then another and honestly, there were 3 beautiful cards from different Hallmark collections and artists including Sarah Jessica Parker that I could give my husband and it would be perfect!

Hallmark #PutYourHearttoPaper MyWAHMPlan.com

Hallmark wants to help all of us find the right card and find the right words to express how we feel about those most important to us; to #PutYourHeartToPaper. That’s why they have set up an awesome site full of inspirational ideas on how we can fully express ourselves. There are even some tips for writing a love-letter!  Can you imagine receiving a hand written love letter? Be still my heart. 

The site even have a series of videos that Hallmark shot with six couples (they’re really awesome) that will touch your heart. These couples were asked how they would express their love without using the word love. Their answers are so heartfelt; you may get teary eyed like I did. You will come away feeling hopeful that love can conquer all. As a wife of some 22 years, I was drawn to Bob and Kim’s story. They have been married for 56 years! What an amazing testimony to marriage and life really.  Told you I love love. 

Watch their video:

I invite you to visit the new  Hallmark holiday today site and get inspired to share all the love that’s in your heart this Valentine’s Day.  Ten head on over to Hallmark.com and shop their Valentine's Day card selection. You can personalize it, purchase it online and Hallmark will mail it for you! There's plenty of gifts to choose from as well. 

No matter how you celebrate Valentine's day, remember to lead with kindness, shine your light, and let love live in your heart.

From all of us to all of you: Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Monday dear readers and welcome to February! Even though it's officially Ground Hog's Day, this post is for another special day in February- Valentine's Day!

#Love is in the Air #Giveaway  prizes

Valentine's Day is a happy day for most of us;  because we get to share our love and appreciation  for the special people in our lives. That's why I've  teamed up with a great group of bloggers to bring you the Love is in the Air giveaway event full of fabulous Valentine's Day gifts for the whole family, sponsored by some of our favorite companies!

Shopular: Founded in 2012, Shopular is well on it's way to becoming the world’s leading mobile shopping community. To put it simply, Shopular delivers the best deals from your favorite retailers right to your phone, saving you time and money. This innovative app is able to intelligently combine cell tower, Wi-Fi and GPS signals to tell when you're at your favorite retailers. Then, you'll automatically get an alert with the latest deals and coupons available. That means NO work for you. You simply go shopping at your favorite mall or shop and the best coupon and deal will pop up on your phone. Over 2 million people are already using Shopular, so make your Valentine's Day shopping a breeze and download their free app today! It's available for Apple and Android users. Shopular wants to make sure you're able to get that special someone a new ring, necklace, or watch this Valentine's Day, so they have generously sponsored a $500 Zales gift card for this giveaway!

V/NO Alcohol Removed Wine: Calling all people who love wine, but need to limit their alcohol consumption - we're excited to introduce you to a new wine made especially for you! V/NO is a delicious beverage for moms, dads, families and friends to enjoy with an alcohol content less than .5%, half the calories and sugar of traditional wine, no added sugars or chemicals, and it comes in an appropriate serving size for health conscious consumers. V/NO Red, White, and Rosé are premium dealcoholized wines made in Napa Valley, California. Using traditional wine methods, the fruit is crushed, fermented and aged in stainless steel, and just prior to bottling, the alcohol is gently removed by cold filtration, leaving less than 0.5% alcohol. V/NO captures the health benefits of wine and is packaged in a unique and convenient 187ml bottle that doubles as a serving glass. V/NO is a more fun and tasty choice as an everyday beverage to pair with your food for lunch or dinner, with virtually no alcohol. No more need for another boring water, soda, tea or juice - opt for V/NO instead! You can purchase V/NO exclusively through their website. Use code LoveVINOwine to save $5 off each case (case = 12 flutes) through March 31st, 2015. Be sure to connect with V/NO on Facebook and Twitter.

I See Me!: Are you looking for the highest quality, most personalized children's books available? Look no further than I See Me! Since opening in 2000, the mission of I See Me! books is to increase self esteem in children through personalized books that celebrate the uniqueness of each child. The goal of their books is to show each child how absolutely unique and special he or she is, to teach the child how to spell his or her name, and to build vocabulary skills. I See Me! books have become popular among celebrities including Courteney Cox, Brooke Shields and Jessica Alba. This Valentine's Day, show your little one just how much he or she is loved with the Who Loves You, Baby personalized board from bestselling author and illustrator Nina Laden and I See Me!. Your child’s name and photo are featured on the cover and inside this high quality board book and the thick, durable pages will stand up to repeated readings and are just right for little hands to hold. As an added personal touch, this book also includes the child's birth date and a printed dedication from the sender. It's available for $29.99 on the I See Me! website.

Step2: The Step2 Company, headquartered in Streetsboro, Ohio, is the largest American manufacturer of preschool and toddler toys and the world's largest rotational molder of plastics. They strive to be the leading innovator of children's products that build imaginations and enrich the family's celebration of childhood. Step2 products are made to last and will hold up despite the beating that children tend to give everything they come in contact with. Their toys are colorful, fun, and encourage imaginative play. Your smallest Sweetheart(s) will have a blast in the Sweetheart Playhouse, now in a white & pink color palette! The Sweetheart Playhouse resembles a charming gingerbread-style cottage. Children will enjoy its colorful design and large interior. Several toddlers can fit inside this durable playhouse for backyard fun. An outside grill allows children to flex their creativity and imagination flipping burgers. Toy electronic phone and working doorbell will enable kids to play house and have a fun clubhouse experience.

Personalization Mall: PersonalizationMall.com was founded in 1998 with a goal of making personalized gift buying quick and easy. Their revolutionary preview technology takes the guess work out of personalization, by allowing you to see what your gift will look like, personalized with your details, before you buy it! Nothing Says, "You're special" like personalized gifts! It shows you went out of your way to find a unique gift and to personalize it to make it theirs alone! The personalized gift is the one that gets passed around at the party, for everyone to see! It makes you feel good to give, and it's even more special to receive! At PersonalizationMall.com, the gifts are as unique as the person receiving it! The majority of the designs have been created by their team of talented artists, and are available exclusively on the Personalization Mall website. Personalization Mall is giving one lucky couple his and her bathrobes, in your choice of size and color (black, ivory, or pink) with personalization included!

Win it!

One lucky person will win this $1100+ Valentine's Day prize package from Step2,
V/NO, I See Me!, Shopular, and Personalization Mall!
Open to the Lower 48 US states only, ages 18 and up. Ends 2/16/15 at 11:59 PM EST.

Enter using the Giveaway Tools form below. Good Luck!

Disclosure: This giveaway is hosted by Thrifty Nifty Mommy and Viva Veltoro, and generously sponsored by the participating brands. Thrifty Nifty Mommy, Viva Veltoro, and the participating blogs are not responsible for prize fulfillment. Please contact thriftyniftymommy(at)yahoo.com with questions about this giveaway. One winner will be randomly selected using the Giveaway Tools random selector and notified via email. Once notified, the winner will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest or Google. Void where prohibited.