Planning For An Amazing Summer Vacation

With the upcoming holidays nearing, I know it is time to start planning ahead. I look forward to summer every year because it not only means beautiful, warm weather, but it's vacation time for us! We save during the year to help us afford an amazing vacation, but I still don't want to overspend. This is why I scout out the best deals in several ways and try to save as much money as possible.

The first step to trip-planning is deciding on where to go. More often than not, we end up going to a beach, which works for me! I love going to the beach and so do the kids since they can play in the ocean and make sandcastles. I love sitting on the beach and reading a good book. Hotels can charge ridiculous fees, so I avoid making reservations straight through them. Instead, I made sure to see Coupon Codes for Expedia in order to find which beaches had any specials, promotions and discounts. I have always wanted to take the kids to the Bahamas and found an amazing deal for July at a resort.

Once I had the resort booked, I went to find Promo Codes for Southwest Airlines Vacations. With a family of four, flights can become very expensive quickly, so finding good deals is a must when trying to budget. Southwest Airlines had some deals that were completely affordable and they went to the Bahamas, so we booked immediately.

I have to admit, it was such a relief to have the major holiday planning taken care of! Usually the planning is pretty stressful, but this time I felt like it was so easy. In fact, I have all of this extra time to view free Coupon Codes for your summer holiday! We've saved money on the vacation so far. Why not extend it to everything else we need for the vacation? I purchased new hats, swimsuits and, of course, sunscreen for the family, all at discount prices with the promo codes. The only thing left to do at this point was to find a good book. Luckily, Rick Riordan's new book is out, so I scooped it up for only $12 with a coupon. Not bad!

Are you planning a trip this summer? How much money can you save? Leave a comment telling us how you save money when vacationing!

How To Save Money On Movies

The TV is known to be the most popular past time since its creation until the present. However, the TV only owes its prestige from movies that have made the motion picture popular in the first place. Movies are more than just entertainment that like television talk shows or prime time series, movies are often works of art. Because of this many spend extra cash just to watch movies. However, you need not spend tons of cash for this. Here are some tips for inexpensive movie viewing experience.

1. Go on Discount Days If you are into watching the latest movies and in the big screen, I suggest going on discount days in order to save some money, especially if you’re not alone. The problem is that during these days, there are more people than usual and getting tickets may be hard. However, this can easily be resolved by going to the ticket booth's website and reserving tickets in advance.

2. Get Premium TV Subscription Some cable and digital TV carriers offer premium subscriptions that gets you access to pay per views and the latest movies in HD. You get to watch these great movies in the comfort of your own home and you can watch tons of them for a minimal rate. The best thing is that you can watch it with as much people as you want.

3. Skip the Popcorn If you are with several people buying popcorn can easily inflate the budget. Cut on the extra calories and pass on the popcorn. If you really want something to chew on, buy large pack of popcorn and share it with your companions instead of buying one for each person.

4. Consider renting If you are into Blu-Ray or DVDs then consider renting them from authorized renting stations. You will probably only watch it once and a small renting fee is truly worth it especially if you will be watching it with the whole family or with your friends.

5. Buy DVDs or Blue Rays from local pawn shops Pawn shops often buy Blu-Ray Movies if they are really good. Thus, pawn shops are good places to look movies for if you are considering on owning the movie for the sake of collecting it or watching it again and again.

6. Get Coupon Codes “If you love it, then buy it” as the saying goes. Buying the movies from authorized stores will keep the movie industry going. Buying a movie in DVD or Blu-Ray format is still an affordable option compared to watching it on the cinema. But as opposed to options 4 and 5, this is a slightly more expensive option. However, owning a brand new DVD or Blu-Ray has a different pleasure to it if you really love movies. If you want to make savings out of this, it is best if you can get your hands on to some coupons for walmart or discount coupons from other stores that sell Blu-Ray. This makes it almost as affordable as second hand copies.

Savory Summer Event Giveaway : #Win 2 Prize Packages

Welcome to the Savory Summer event hosted by Measuring Flower & Graphoniac! There are 61 other blogs participating, so be sure to use the Linky below to hop over to another blog after you enter here. The event ends at 11:59pm on May 30th, so you have plenty of time to enter.
What is the Savory Summer Event?
Each participating blog (found on the Linky) has food-related giveaways worth at least $25 and many are worth much more!
Our incredible grand prize sponsors for this decadent event are Nostalgia Electrics and Ella's Kitchen, who are offering prizes worth over $100 each! You can enter to win one or both grand prizes HERE!

We have worked hard to get 2 awesome giveaway packages for our readers at Children Teaching Mama and I'm so proud to work with these companies! 

So are you ready to see what our giveaway packages include? 

Father's Day

 Father’s Day is an opportunity to show Dads and Grandads just how much you care. What better way to do this than by adding your own unique, personal message to a gift; or making it truly theirs by putting their name on it. With Getting Personal you can do just that; easily, affordable and in the comfort of your own home. Getting Personal has brought together a wide range of gifts for you to choose from that will suit the tastes and interests of every Father and Grandfather. Whatever hobbies and likes they may have: be it football, fishing, golfing or fast cars, there will be a gift available that matches perfectly.

The range spans from smaller gifts - to add that extra touch - to items like engraved silver cufflinks. There are also other types of gifts available that don’t have to be personalised, like ‘driving thrill’ experiences in luxury fast cars. The choice is yours. If you just want to add a bit of fun to light up their day, why not choose a personalised ‘Superhero’ mug to remind them how much you appreciate all that they do all year round. With Fathers Day Gifts at Getting Personal you can cut out all the exhausting trudging around the shops looking for that perfect present.

The site itself is easy to use with gifts grouped into categories for you, which helps make choosing your gift a pleasure. While you’re at it you can also create a personalised card to go with your gift, all on the same site. Get it all done in one go! With hundreds of card designs to choose from, you are sure to find the right one for them. With fast delivery and award winning customer service, you are just a few clicks away from a gift they will love.


Time To Find Deals & Upgrade My Husband's Wardrobe

Being a stay-at-home Mom definitely has its rewards, though we also must make some sacrifices. My husband earns most of our income and, for that reason, we are on a budget. Each month we have an allotted amount of money going to bills, groceries and necessary items. When I first started living on a budget, times were tough and I honestly had no idea what I was doing, but now I look at each month as a challenge. Can I save more this month than last month?

I, of course, clip my coupons from the Sunday paper, but living up in the mountains, I depend more on online purchases. I have found that I do tend to save more by purchasing online. Plus, I don't have to stand in lines and deal with rude people, which makes it completely worth my time! How do you save money by purchasing online? First, you must look for sales. Search around other deal blogs and find the items on sale that you need to buy. Then, go to PromotionCode.org to find great codes for the online stores and products I want to purchase. I just recently found the website and was so excited.

My husband finally admitted he needed a new pair of tennis shoes last week, so I knew it as definitely time to purchase some. The poor guy will wear shoes until there are holes in the bottom! I immediately hopped online and began searching for deals. PromotionCode.org has their "Hottest" and "Newest" promo codes listed on the homepage as well as links to separate Categories. I clicked on "Shopping" and found a huge alphabetically organized list of businesses and codes available! As someone who is all about organization, I love the way this site is put together, making it easy to find exactly what I was looking for.

I ended up buying him a few different items for his new and updated wardrobe. I found a code for $10 off a $60 purchase at Finish Line as well as a 30% off a purchase at Lands' End, one of his favorite brands. When all was said and done, he had a new pair of tennis shoes, a new shirt, and a nice pair of khakis! Now that he has some new clothes, I think it's about time to find some new items for my summer wardrobe. I really need a new swimsuit!

What new clothes do you need for this summer? We ended up saving $40 on my husband's new clothes, so he was very happy and now I can buy even more! Just don't tell him I mentioned that last part.


Horse Haven: Own a Horse Farm Without All the Hassle

What child isn't fascinated with horses? I always begged for a horse as a child, but, of course, never received one. I eventually outgrew my love for horses (okay, I still like them a little), but now I have kids! Even my boys love horses and, since there are horse farms all around where we live, we drive past them constantly, making them want one even more. Luckily, we have found a happy medium, a place where my son can play with horses, feed them and even build onto his own farm. One of our favorite game makers, UbiSoft, has created Horse Haven, making it possible for children to finally have the horse or horses of their dreams!

I helped Josiah get started, but the game makes it very easy to begin with a tutorial. Five minutes after beginning, you know exactly what to do and you have goals to work towards for your farm! Here's basically what your farm looks like when you begin and the tutorial that tells you what to do.
It didn't take long before Josiah's farm was growing and thriving. He loves how you must feed the horses, wash them and really take care of them. We added a water well, a petting zoo and even a carrot garden for some delicious horse treats! Here is how we fed the horse carrots:
Josiah had such a great time with this game that we've played it a few times now. It just doesn't get old for him, so I know he'll be playing this one for a while. I have to admit, I'm curious about what is to come. They mention horse shows and even breeding, so it looks like the game just gets more exciting as you go along!

Our day of planning and building came to an end when we ran out of energy. Then, you must wait a certain amount of time before continuing or you can purchase more energy if you don't want to wait. I am hoping this game eventually goes to the iPad because I would love for him to have a more portable version. For now, I have a feeling we'll be on Facebook much more often! Here's what the farm looked like after a hard day's work:

Give Horse Haven a try and let me know what you think!

Thank you to Ubisoft for sponsoring this blog post. Please click here to learn more about Ubisoft. I was selected for this sponsorship by the Clever Girls Collective. All opinions are my own. #UbiChamps


Johnson's Baby Partnering with Save the Children to Support Mamas & Babies #MomCentral

For Mother's Day this year, our family went down to my mother-in-law's house for a cookout! We didn't do anything fancy, but the day in itself was just special, spending it with family and not a care in the world. The kids played together outdoors while we cooked and then we just enjoyed each other's company! The boys helped me back little gift baskets for their Grandma and Aunt, so we handed those out. I think the boys were just as excited to give them presents as they were to receive them. Our family has supported us through thick and thin and, without them, there were times I know we could not have gotten by. This is why I try to give back in small ways and to let them know how much we truly appreciate them.

As a Mama, it is not only important to give back to others, but to teach our children to do the same. We are here to set an example and, as their providers and educators, we must show them that giving is in most cases, more important and gratifying than receiving. This is why we have volunteered at places around our county as well as donate to Goodwill. We will continue to do so as they get older and, hopefully, they will one day impart this wisdom to their own children.
Big brother helping little brother!
 Johnson's Baby Cares
One of our favorite brands Johnson's Baby has a new charitable platform called Johnson's Baby Cares that I think is an amazing cause worth sharing and supporting. They are partnering with Save the Children, an organization focused on improving the health of Mamas and babies worldwide. Johnson's Baby Cares is donating Baby "Care Kits" stocked with all kinds of necessary baby items, including lotions, washes, shampoos, diaper creams and more to Save the Children.

Plus, Johnson's offered to donate an additional $50,000 to Save the Children when THIS video hit 500,000 views on their Happy Mother's Day, Mom-- You're Doing OK" video! Guess what? It is currently at over 4 million views! So, thanks for everyone who has done their part to make this amazing gift possible.

How can you help?
You can click "Donate" from the Johnson's Baby Cares Facebook! Also, Each time you purchase a Johhnson's Baby product between April 15th and June 10th, 2012 and redeem a $.50 coupon at retail stores, $.25 will be donated to Save the Children!!! Throughout 2012, Johnson's Baby will offer additional ways consumers can help support Save the Children, so be sure to "Like" their Facebook page to keep up with all the current campaigns and promotions!

I wrote this review while participating in a campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of Johnson & Johnson and received a promotional item to thank me for my participation.


Mother's Day Gift Guide: Thirty-One Gifts $31 Gift Card Giveaway

I heard about Thirty-One Gifts a few months ago and absolutely love looking at the catalog. All of the items make such wonderful gifts and I could see pretty much all of the items in my own home. I especially love personalized items like baskets, bags and lunch totes. Thirty-One Gifts has those and much, much more!

Long-time reader, Stephanie K., now sells Thirty-One Gifts, so I couldn't wait to actually receive a few items to review. They are on their way, so look out for our review in the near future. For now, I'll tell you about the items I am receiving as well as some awesome sales and opportunities!

The All-In-One Organizer
A portable sized organizer for you to take on the go or use around the house by Thirty-One Gifts! There are so many cute designs, too, including this one. The All-In-One retails for $20.

Mini Utility Bin

This mini bin is the perfect tote for smaller items around the house. We use ours for toys in the living room! It is made of durable laminated nylon with side handles. It is also collapsible when not in use!

Let's Party!
Now that you've seen some of the products from Thirty-One Gifts, did you know you can schedule a party? Stephanie throws in-home parties in the St. Louis area. If you aren't local, she can even throw parties via Skype or through the Catalog. Speaking of which, Children Teaching Mama has a party going on right now! To join the party, just Click Here and then click "Shop"!

Buy It & Mystery Winner
Make your purchases through the party! If we get to $200+ in sales, one person will receive 50% off one item! The winner will be chosen at random from those who have made purchases during the party.

May & June Sale Specials
May's special: For every $31 spent, you can purchase an All-In-One Organizer for only $5 (a $15 savings)!
June's Special: For every $35 spent, you can purchase a Large Utility Tote for $10 (a $25 savings)! Plus, you can purchase the all-new Top-A-Tote that fits on the Large Utility Tote for only $10.

Become A Consultant
Has seeing all of these wonderful products made you interested in becoming a consultant for Thirty-One Gifts? If so, you can purchase a starter kit for only $99! Plus, right now Thirty-One is offering the O.J. Incentive. Anyone that signs up by May 31st can earn a $100 rebate if they make $1,000 in sales within the first 30 days! There are also other incentives applied during a consultant's first 90 days. You can earn your kit for free and much more. Click here and then click "Join My Team" to read more!

Ready For A Giveaway?
One Lucky Reader Will Win a $31 Thirty-One Gifts Gift Card! Just use the Rafflecopter form below to enter. This giveaway will end on Tuesday, June 19th at 12:01am. Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Little Cosmetics Children's Play Make-Up Review & Luxury Kit Giveaway

Little Cosmetics is play make-up that looks and feels just like real make-up. But it doesn't show up on skin or rub off on fingers. Pretend play at its best - all the imagination and no mess! Little Cosmetics is the perfect solution for the little girl that always wants to use mom’s make-up, but won’t be fooled by fake plastic make-up. And the perfect choice for mom’s that want to keep their little girls mess-free and safe from toxins.
Little Cosmetics is different than most pretend make-up for four reasons: 
1) It actually looks like real make-up. Each pretend make up piece is packaged in realistic looking compacts and jars with vibrant shades, it can even fool adults!
2) It feels real! It is not fake hard plastic or dried nail polish. It is soft and smooth, just like real make-up.
3) They do not show up on skin at all. Little Cosmetics is not a chemical free make up that is safe for kids like what is sold in stores. It is 100% pretend make up.
4) The pretend make-up in Little Cosmetics products is safe and non-toxic.
The Luxury Kit Includes:
- One Pressed Powder Compact
- Two Iridescent Lip Glosses with roller ball applicator
- One Pink Blush Compact
- Two Eye Shadow Palettes
- One Glitter Shadow Pot
- 5 Piece Brush Set (real make-up brushes!)

 The entire kit comes packaged in a pink organza draw string bag so your little girl can tote around her make up easily! Please not that Little Cosmetics are a choking hazard because they contain small parts. They are not intended for children under 3.
Buy It: You can purchase a Little Cosmetics Luxury Kit for 25.00 on etsy.com!

Win It: Little Cosmetics has offered one lucky reader their own Essentials Kit!


Mom Central #BananaBoat Twitter Party @ 3-4PM @MomCentral

Hi, everyone! It's 15 minutes until the Mom Central Banana Boat Twitter Party! Guess what? Children Teaching Mama is a co-host, so come on buy for some fun.The party is from 3-4pm ET. Plus, you can WIN 1 of 6 $50 AmEx gift cards!

I hope to see you there. Be sure to say hi if you stop by! :)

oin and for the Twitter Party today from 3-4PM ET and enter to win 1 of 6 $50 AmEx gift cards!

Westlake Dermatology : Love The Skin You Are In

As a teenager, I suffered from horrible acne and was miserable. I tried medication and other over-the-counter creams and cleansers, but nothing worked. So, years later I no longer had acne, but the damage was done to my skin and scars were left behind. A few years ago I started researching my options to ridding myself of the scarring and met with a dermatologist, which was the best decision I could have made!

Westlakedermatology.com offers a variety of services for patients with acne, skin cancer, or scarring to patients wanting cosmetic procedures! Their physicians have the experience and want to help patients achieve their treatment goals with the amazing procedures. You can find a list of the different services on their website, including acne treatments, breast enhancement, brow lifts, rhinoplasty and much, much more.

When I met with my dermatologist, I decided to have a variety of treatments, including a chemical peel and a form of microdermabrasion to help smooth out my skin. The results were amazing! My skin was soft and, after many years, I finally saw my face without scars. The best thing about having these procedures was that I felt better about myself, more confident and beautiful.

Have you considered getting a skin treatment or cosmetic procedure? Westlake Dermatology has 5 dermatology locations across the state of Texas, so you can see which location is closest and make an appointment today. The physician will go over your options and what they think would be best for you. 


eShakti Beautiful Custom Dress Giveaway

 We are huge eShakti fans and have worked with them a few times in the past on reviews. We most recently featured them in our Mother's Day Gift Guide and I will be writing a review in the near future. They have a huge variety of beautiful dresses that are perfect for the hot summer months! You can keep cool and look your best.

Besides the fact that the dresses are fabulous, eShakti offers custom-sizing and custom-styled dresses! You can give exact measurements to receive a dress that fits you perfectly. In addition, most of the dress styles can be altered in length and sleeve-style. This is what sets eShakti apart from other online stores and why they are one of our favorites!

Ready to see some of the new dresses? There are many new dresses, in all different styles, available on eShakti. I cannot resist showing you some of my favorites!
Floral Hem Stretch Cotton Dress
Forest Eyelet Shirtdress
Spanish Hacienda Sundress
Aren't those gorgeous! Look for our review of the Floral Hem Stretch Cotton Dress in the very near future.
Ready For A Giveaway?

Unique Investment Ideas For Your Family

Back when our first son was just a baby, we struggled to get by each month. I had a part-time job, we lived in an apartment and my husband was still in law school! We lived on my measly salary and student loans back then, just making it month to month. Times were tough, but thankfully, times have changed for our little growing family!

Unlike our life only five years ago, we are now able to save and put back a bit of money each month. With two boys quickly growing and one about to begin school, we have already started thinking about investing money for their future. College is not cheap, as my own parents learned, so I want to be prepared. I've been talking with my parents about the different options we have and he suggested checking silver bullion prices!

So far, we have been keeping our money in a savings account, but not earning much of a return. That's why we have decided we are going to buy silver eagles. The coins are collectable and usually maintain their worth over time. In fact, their value will most likely increase over time. What I like about investing this way is that it's so safe and I can keep the coins in-hand. I know they are with me if I should ever need to sell them.

I have to admit that when I was a child, I loved coin collecting! I had several from around the world as well as collectable US coins. I think that is why buying the silver eagle coins really appeals to me. Plus, they are affordable! I can purchase several, keep them in our social security box and by the time the kids are going to college, who knows how much they will be worth. That's part of the excitement!

In what unique ways to you invest money for your family? Do you buy silver bullion?


New & Improved Huggies Wipes & Diapers Experience @Huggies #MomCentral

As much as we love cloth diapering, we've come to realize that they just can't withstand an entire night with my son! Night after night, he was waking up crying with a leaking diaper and wet sheets, so I knew it was time to try some diapers. We have used Huggies diapers in the past, so I couldn't wait to participate with Mom Central and try out the new and improved Huggies Snug & Dry diapers and Huggies Wipes.

When I say the Snug & Dry Diapers are improved, I really mean it! They have made their Leak Lock better able to pull wetness in and lock it away. It wicks the liquid away from the skin very well, which I can say from our own personal experience. I have been amazed at how much these diapers really can withstand because my son really puts them to the test at night and during nap time. Plus, they have some cute designs on them that my son just loves. He is a huge Mickey Mouse fan, so when he needs a new diaper, he doesn't hesitate to go get a new "Mouse Dipe" for me to change him into. It's so cute!

Here's Liam looking very proud in is Mouse Dipe:

I love, love Huggies Wipes! They are my absolute favorite and now they are even better. They are stronger and I can tell they are definitely thicker than they were. I've found myself using them for much more than just diapers. I use them to clean off sticky fingers, dirty faces and even small spills on our hardwood floor. They are always around, convenient to use and work so well! I need to start keeping them in every room.

Huggies Sung & Dry Diapers as well as the improved Huggies Wipes definitely were a hit in our home. I've already bought several more packs of wipes since receiving our review pack, so you can tell they are awesome! What are your favorite diapers and wipes? Have you given Huggies a try yet? 

Be sure to Like Huggies on Facebook to keep up with all the latest news, promos, coupons and more!

I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central for Huggies. I received product samples to facilitate my review and a promotional item to thank me for participating.

Receiving A Beautiful Gift Of Flowers

This year my birthday fell on a weekday! I was disappointed because it is so hard to wait for the weekend for a celebration! I was at home on March 19th with my kids, as usual, while my husband was at work. The day was pretty much just like any other, playing, eating lunch and having fun until the doorbell rang. Who could it possibly be? As I opened the door, I saw what was being delivered and a smile immediately spread across my face. Flowers! My husband had ordered Flowers from Interflora! This was such a nice surprise and something I never would have expected. Plus, they were freshly cut and absolutely gorgeous. I couldn't wait to display them out on our dining room table for everyone to admire!

There is just something about a gift of flowers for a special occasion that just spreads joy like no other gifts can. Not to mention, flowers can completely brighten up any room in the house. Our dining room looks so much brighter and I feel like summer really is here! I smile every time I catch sight of the flowers. Only a few days later, our extended family came over to celebrate my birthday and the flowers were still beautiful, lively and colorful. What flowers did I receive? Tulips are my absolute favorite, so I was sent a bouquet of different color tulips.

This month just happened to not only be my Mom's birthday, but also Mother's Day. After receiving such a beautiful bouquet from my husband, I was inspired to arrange flower delivery with Interflora. My Mom's favorite flowers are daisies, so I found a huge bouquet of Gerber daisies that I knew she would absolutely love. As soon as they arrived at her doorstep, she called to thank me and was actually crying. She couldn't believe how lovely they were and was so excited to receive them.

Now I know that flowers really do make perfect gifts, so I plan on sending many bouquets in the near future. It seems like over the next few months many of my friends and relatives are celebrating special occasions and, being summertime, I am very busy with my two boys, their activities and our vacations. After receiving my own flowers and my mom loving her own flowers, I've decided to go ahead and schedule flower delivery for my mother-in-law and cousin, too! It's so easy to do and actually fun deciding on bouquets for them.

Have you ever received flowers from a loved one? Leave a comment below and tell us about it!

Mother's Day Gift Guide: The Sunglass Man Online Review & Giveaway

sunglass man
My hubby has to have sunglasses…. for him it is an absolute necessity. However, he tends to lose and break them quite often which means I don’t want him spending tons of money on them. And so that is why I was pleased to find The Sunglass Man Online. Finally lots of options and at affordable prices too – makes for a happy wife.
The Sunglass Man Online was originally a walk in store located in the exclusive Siesta Key Village on the Gulf Coast of Florida. In 1999 they made the jump to the internet where they have been selling affordable and fashionable sunglasses ever since. Dustin was excited to pick out a pair of glasses from their huge selection which includes sunglasses for the entire family. He ended up choosing a pair of sunglasses very similar to Ray Ban Sunglasses, but at a fraction of the cost.
Dustin was very pleased when his sunglasses arrived. These Ray Ban replicas are semi rimless with a sleek classic style – especially the angular frame and arms. They also feature spring temples and wide wrapped lens coverage. Plus they are available in five different frame and lens colors. Dustin went with the grey metal frame and smoke gradient lenses. I think he looks pretty darn handsome in his new shades, hehe.
Plus as I mentioned at The Sunglass Man Online you will also find sunglasses for the women and kids in the family too. There are quite a few pairs that I would love to have… and with free shipping when you spend $25, why not? And I know sometimes ordering glasses online can be a little daunting, but there’s nothing to worry about because The Sunglass Man Online has a money back guarantee! If you are not 100% satisfied with your purchase just send them back for a full refund, doesn’t get much easier than that.
So what are you waiting for? Head on over to The Sunglass Man Online and check out their huge selection of glasses that are extremely affordable. Oh and guess what? You can enter to win a gift card here! Just fill out the Rafflecopter entry form below.

Prepare for the Invasion of a New Galaxy

Prepare for the Invasion of a New Galaxy Samsung Galaxy S and Samsung Galaxy S II are two of the largest contributors of what and where Samsung is now when it comes to the smart phone industry. This has garnered the Samsung Galaxy S series a reputation of being the phone to beat when it comes to display and performance. And when Samsung has announced the release of the latest phone in the series, the Samsung Galaxy S III, every smart hone fan knew that it is going to be the longest wait since the iPhone 4. So to make the wait seem longer, here are some sneak peeks of what the Samsung Galaxy S III has to offer.

The Samsung Galaxy S III features a very different appearance than its predecessors. Where the first two Galaxy S phones are rectangular in shape, the new Samsung Galaxy S III features rounded edges. The menu button is also considerably smaller this time. Samsung's newest phone's body is made up of a glossy plastic that has undergone a process that what Samsung would call Hyperglaze. Overall, the Samsung Galaxy S III is a slick new phone that has a fresh look to it.

Samsung is considered as the best when it comes to digital TV screens, side by side with Sony. In its past phones, Samsung has proven itself able to miniaturize these features through its Galaxy and galaxy S II's AMOLED and Super AMOLED screens. And in the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S III, the Super AMOLED screen is back. Only bigger this time. It has a 4.8 inch screen. Not only that it is bigger, its images are also sharper with the density of 302 PPI. It is exciting to see if it will be able to match iPhone 4S's retina display.

The Galaxy S series is known for its performance, and it is interesting to see if the third in the series will be able to uphold this reputation. Looking at its specifications of Quad-core 1.4 GHz Cortex-A9; Exynos 4212 Quad chipset; and Mali-400MP GPU, this new starship by Samsung looks like the phone to beat. Its 1.4 Quad core CPU is one of the most powerful smart phone processors that will be released to the market. It is interesting as to how Samsung will channel this power into performance. Hopefully, it will do as well as it does on synthetic benchmarks, which is nothing short of fantastic.

Operating System
The Samsung Galaxy S III is still equipped with the Android OS and the Touch Wiz combination. But with the extra half inch since the Samsung Galaxy S II, a lot of promise can be made for the new user interface. For example, there are four new shortcuts that can be placed at the dock screen. Aside from this, heavy modifications were also reported to have been done such as the fully customizable lock screen and up to seven fully customizable home screens. With this kind of monster coming our way, it is hard not to think of the price tag. But whatever the price is, its performance is almost sure to give us one of the best cell phone deals ever.

$3000 Disney Cruise Giveaway Event

Here's the moment we've all been waiting for! Acadiana's Thrifty Mom has teamed up with American Family and an awesome group of bloggers to bring you our BIGGEST giveaway yet! One lucky fan will win a Disney Cruise for a family of 4 valued at $3000! That's right, a Disney Cruise ♥ This awesome giveaway is brought to you by American Family and Acadiana's Thrifty Mom, and hosted by Frugality For Less, and Debbie Does Coupons. GOOD LUCK! *This giveaway is opened to U.S. residents only. You must be 18 years of age to enter to win. The winner will be responsible for transportation to and from the port of departure. This giveaway is not affiliated with Facebook, Google, Pinterest, or Twitter in any way. Please read HERE for complete rules.


$40 Ralph Lauren Gift Code Flash Giveaway Event


Welcome the the $40 Ralph Lauren Gift Code Flash Giveaway sponsored by Mama Chocolate & Children Teaching Mama! We have linked up with some other awesome bloggers to give away a $40 Gift Code to use on RalphLauren.com. Buy yourself something, your children or even your spouse!

The flash giveaway begins on Sunday, May 20th at 12:01AM and ends on Thursday, May 24th at 11:59pm. Don't forget to come back each day for your extra entries!

Just use the Rafflecopter form below to enter. A winner will be chosen via Random.org and emailed. The winner must respond within 48 hours to confirm their prize or another will be picked! 
Good Luck!

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Carson-Dellosa Summer Bridge Activities Educational Gift Package

My son is so excited about school getting out on his birthday, June 8th! He has worked so hard this year and learned so much from his amazing teachers. I remember when I was a child, I never looked at a book or learned anything worthwhile the entire summer, but I definitely don't want this for my children. I want them to have a fun summer that is also educational!

It is very important to keep up with the learning process during the summer, especially for young children who are still learning the basics. Josiah has been learning his alphabet, sounds and numbers. If he went a few months without practice, he wouldn't retain much by the next school year. Research shows that children can lose up to 2.5 months of learning during the summer, which causes teachers to re-teach those skills the following year for 2-4 weeks! It's important as parents and caregivers to make sure this doesn't happen. Here are some fun facts about education and why it is important to practice during the summer break.

This summer we can do our part as parents to refresh our children's skills and that's where Carson-Dellosa comes into play. Their products, such as the Summer Bridge Activities items, help kids prepare for the upcoming school year and keep their skills sharp throughout the summer months!

Thanks to Carson-Dellosa, One Lucky Children Teaching Mama Reader Will Receive An Awesome Summer Learning Gift Pack. 
The pack includes:
  • 1 Summer Bridge Activities Workbook (grade of winner's choice)
  • 1 Summer Bridge Activities Card Set (grade of winner's choice)
  • 2 Sun Notepads
  • 2 Packs of Sea Life Name Tags
  • 1 Pack of Sea Life Mini Incentive Charts

To enter just use the Rafflecopter form below! This giveaway is for US Residents only. All entries must be received before Sunday, June 10th at 12:01am. Good Luck! a Rafflecopter giveaway


Using A Resume Builder For Impeccable Resumes

When applying to graduate school, I had to create a circum vitae, which is a resume listing all of your education background and information that would make you a great candidate for the particular graduate school program. This was the first time I made a resume and I was lost! Somehow I struggled through and created what I now know was a mediocre resume.

After graduate school, I started focusing on finally getting a "real" job and was finally entering the workforce! This was such an exciting time, but once again I was faced with making a resume. I sent out a few, but realized I was doing something wrong. This is when I went online to find a resume builder that could help me create the resume I needed.

One of the most important parts of a resume is your cover letter, something I'd never made before. It goes into more detail about your interest in a particular job, why you would want to work there and why you should be hired. With the help I found, I was able to create cover letters that flowed perfectly with the attached resume and that highlighted my assets for the job.

Another important part of building your resume is listing relevant experience. If you are applying for a managerial position, list other similar jobs that have included customer service and leadership. You want to highlight your experience making you a prime candidate. In addition, I found that related volunteer work is always appreciated. When applying for a job at a hospital, I mentioned my past volunteer work at a local hospital as an ER clerk.

Next time you need to make a resume, don't just put something together quickly. Take the time to do your research from a resume builder and make your resume impeccable. Stand out in the sea of applicants by building a great resume!

Will you be applying for a job in the near future or have you applied recently? Share your tips for building a great resume in a comment below!

I am participating in a blogger campaign by Bucks2Blog and was compensated. However, the views and opinions are my own.

Relieve Back Pain With Tempurpedic

The first time I noticed any signs of back pain was after I had my first son, who ended up being almost 9 pounds! The back pain wasn't too bad until I was pregnant with my second son who sat right on my tailbone and cause excruciating, shooting pain. A few months after having him, I was still experiencing pain, so I knew it was time to do something about it.

There are many ways to minimize back pain, but only a few have worked for me. I first saw a specialist who diagnosed my pain so I could better understand what I was feeling and what caused it to worsen. This is the first and most important step because you will find out what you need to do!

The second thing I did was look for tempurpedic products. My mattress at the time was, unfortunately, a futon, which meant it was very thin and hard. Every morning I woke up completely stiff for hours. I looked at tempurpedic beds and we actually ended up buying a new mattress that is amazing! Paired with a tempurpedic pillow, I am in heaven every time I go to bed at night.

Yes, I've used other methods to control the pain, such as medication and ice packs, but I learned the hard way that if you sleep on a cheap mattress, this is much, much worse for your back and can cause unnecessary pain. Now that we have a nice mattress and my favorite pillow (I take it everywhere), my back pain is minimal. I rarely have muscle spasms and do not need to take medication.

So, the lesson here? See a doctor for your pain, but also make sure your bed is not causing back pain, too. Tempurpedic products was really the answer for me and it may be for you, too!

I am participating in a blogger campaign by Bucks2Blog and was compensated. However, the views and opinions are my own.

A Shaving Routine With After Shave Blalm

I remember when I was much younger and begged my mom to let me shave. I was in such a hurry to grow up and be a big girl. When I finally did start shaving, it took a little practice before I realized there really is an art to shaving. If you want a nice, close shave without cutting yourself, you have to take the time and establish a routine! You also have to find a razor that works well with your skin and hair.

So what is my shaving routine? Before shaving, I like to soak in a warm bath, which makes my skin so soft. Then I use an exfoliating scrub to remove dry skin and to get a closer shave. This prepares me for a great shave. Now it's time to get out the razor and slowly shave up and down to make sure you don't miss any spots. The slower, the better because you are less likely to cut yourself.

After shaving, I use an exfoliating soap with shea butter to make my skin even softer! My husband uses an After shave balm with shea butter, too. He says it feels so good to his skin and soothes it after a close shave. I have to admit, his face is always super-soft after his shaving routine! There are so many great smelling after shave balms for men available that I've bought several. My boys are actually giving him a Lavender Essential Oil Blended after shave balm for Father's Day. I love the lavender scent and it will be great for the hot weather to come this summer!

Do you have a shaving routine or does your husband? Share your shaving secrets in a comment below!

Disclaimer: I am participating in a blogger campaign by Bucks2Blog and was compensated. However, the views and opinions are my own.


Our Own Small Business Experience

When my husband first wanted to open his own law firm, family members discouraged him. They realized the possibility of the a small business not succeeding, us struggling to meet our financial needs and finding appropriate insurance. Listening to them, we were momentarily dissuaded from attempting this venture, but eventually we decided to follow my husband's dream and go for it!

One of the first things we researched before opening his business was self employed insurance. We were afraid we would be paying a bundle as a small business, but we found options that work for our family without breaking the bank. This was such a relief!

Despite our initial worries, the law firm actually had a decent first year. Then, our next stress came around: small business tax. As it turns out, there are many ways to save money and many different deductions a small business can take. There are many hidden deductions you wouldn't normally even think of, such as buying a new computer for the office. Luckily, our tax advisor helped us greatly during this time.

My husband's business is named after himself, though many small businesses use a DBA. What is a dba? It means "doing business as", which is a fictitious name chosen for your business. Although we do not use a DBA, there are many benefits for doing so. In some instances, they are required!

Are you looking to open a small business in the near future? There are two facts of which I am certain when looking to open a small business. The first is to do your research! Educate yourself and do not rush into anything. The second is to ask for help. There are professionals who know all about opening a small business and what it entails, so use this to your advantage. These two suggestions are the ones we took when first starting out and we greatly benefited from them.

Thursday Deep Thoughts

I've wanted to pick a day to write each week about something on my mind. Why not make it Thursday? I know, as bloggers, we often spend so much time writing reviews that we lose track of writing about our own personal thoughts and life. Hopefully I can keep up with these posts each week if everyone likes them!

So, here's what I am thinking about today...

Something happened today that got me thinking about expectations of people. It seems to be the consensus among authors that if you have no expectations of people, you will never be disappointed. We are human and, being human, we think, we feel and we explore. How can we not have expectations about the world around us?

I think a more accurate statement would be that when others meet our expectations (or do not) it can be both satisfying and disappointing at the same time. We want others to meet our expectations, but we idealize what this means. Plus, once they meet the expectations, we often expect even more or more! When we expect others to fail expectations, this, too, can be expected and satisfying that you were right about the person, but also disappointing.

Overall, I think Bruce Lee had it correct when he said, “I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations and you’re not in this world to live up to mine.” If only we could accept this as truth, maybe we could love each other for who we are and realize it is human to err occasionally.

What are your thoughts on the subject?


Buy 1 Mutsy 4Rider Get An Easyrider FREE Promotion

Mutsy has announces an AWESOME promotion, buy a Mutsy 4Rider, Get an Easyrider FREE! The promotion will run from May 15 through May 31 and is valid for U.S. residents.

Details: You may choose the color of your Easyrider from what is in stock.  Must have both a 4Rider (or 4Rider Light) and an Easyrider in your cart and enter code: freerider12 (case-sensitive) on the last page of checkout to receive FREE Easyrider.  Both strollers must be purchased at the same time and be shipped to the same address.  Does not apply to previous orders. Promotion is valid through store.mutsy.com ONLY.

Kiddie Academy Franchise Opportunity & Success Story

As a Mama of two (quickly) growing boys who are very interested in learning, their education is very important. My oldest is about to begin kindergarten and my youngest is about to start going to daycare a few days a week. I am very picky about the types of schooling and daycare I choose for my children, as I want an educational school/daycare for them, somewhere they will not only have fun, but learn each and every day. This is why I am so impressed with Kiddie Academy!

They are currently offering franchising opportunities, which I find so interesting and appealing! That's why I want to share with you some stories of others who have opened their own Kiddie Academy franchise. This week we will focus on a couple from Maryland! 
 Nirali and Pinakin Patel opened their Kiddie Academy franchise, which is located at 6534 Old Waterloo Road, Elkridge, Maryland, on September 17, 2007, both at age 31.

As new parents, the Patels understand that quality child care is important but scarce. They are providing local residents with the level of care and compassion for which Kiddie Academy is known.

Background: After working as a data manager for clinical trials for Emmes Corporation and as a project manager for Northrop Grumman, respectively, Nirali and Pinakin Patel decided to embrace their dreams of owning a business. With children of her own, Nirali saw the need for quality child care in her community. Armed with her MBA and her Kiddie Academy training, Nirali guides day-to-day operations at the academy and ensures that personal relationships are fostered with each and every parent and child that comes through her door. Nirali enjoys the sense of community at Kiddie Academy. In addition to building bonds with her Kiddie Academy families, Nirali has the flexibility to spend more time with her 21-month-old son, Ryan, a Kiddie Academy student.

Goals: Although they do not have a background in child care, the Patels’ mix of business savvy and high expectations regarding care for their own children have provided a solid foundation to not only grow their existing academy, but also to open a second location in the area within the next few years.

Challenges: Because this is a new business in the area, the Patels need to get the word out to parents that Kiddie Academy is not like other child care providers – it is better. As more people find out about their academy, the Patels expect enrollment numbers will continue to increase.

Results: The Patels already feel that they have made a difference in their community, and their enrollment is steadily increasing. Parents are very pleased with the service they receive and the Patels’ hands-on approach to business. The children never want to leave.

I am partnering with Kiddie Academy Franchising to write a series of posts about opportunities; however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are honest and entirely my own.

America's Supernanny Casting Call For Atlanta Area

As many of you may know, we live just north of Atlanta, Georgia, so I am very excited to tell you about this opportunity!

America's Supernanny is currently searching for families to be on their show. Could your family benefit from the help of the child/teen expert, Deborah Tillman? She has founded and runs 3 successful daycare centers in Virginia where she has worked with children and teens for many years. Her credentials are outstanding and she wants to help families!

America's Supenanny is coming to Atlanta, Georgia to interview families at the end of this month/beginning of June! Do you have behavioral difficulties with your children? Or do you know someone else who does? They could greatly benefit from this opportunity!

If you are interested or want to recommend a family for the show, please contact Robyn Kiyomi directly at 323.904.4680 or via email at rkiyomi@shedmediaus.com with your name, phone number, city/state, number of children and why you need help.

The deadline to apply is Friday, May 25th, 2012, so don't delay!


Planning A Family Vacation: A Trip To New York & A Cruise

Summer is once again nearing and we all know what that means: time for a vacation! Many of us (my husband included) looks forward to our vacation all year. We take a week each July for a family trip and I've already begun working on the details. Sometimes we go to the beach and other times we visit historical sites. This year I really want to take the kids up to New York!

I've been to several countries and many states, but have yet to visit New York, though I've always wanted to go. Now that I have children, I want to show them the world and what better place to start than the states nearby? We can see the Statue of Liberty, visit Times Square, and, of course the Central Park Zoo.

I was planning our trip to be just around the state, but then I found cruises from New York and the plan changed! We all know just how tiring a vacation can be, often ended up at home even more exhausted than before, but not this time. After a few days of being tourists around New York, we are going on a cruise. I love going on cruises and this time it's so affordable that I just can't resist.

I do love traveling with my family and visiting different states, but cruises are even more fun. Have you ever been on one? The last cruise I was on went to several different places, including Jamaica and the Bahamas. I was able to plan excursions to historical places and also go on other just plan fun adventures. The last time I went swimming with dolphins, but I've also gone mountain biking and horseback riding!

When I told my husband our vacation plans for this summer, he was even more excited than usual. He's never been on a cruise before, so this will be a first for him, too! I cannot wait for them to experience all of the excitement in New York and then on a cruise. What are your plans for this summer?


Mother's Day Gift Guide: aden + anais Dream Blanket Review & Muslin Crib Sheets Giveaway

The first time I saw aden + anais products was when we were registering for a baby shower at Target. As soon as I felt the swaddle blankets, I knew we had to have them! They were, by far, the softest swaddle blankets I had found for Josiah. Since then I have been in love with aden + anais, which is why I was so excited to work with them on a review!

About aden + anais
Today, aden + anais, has brought the legacy of muslin together with fashion forward design to create a line of products that are as stylish as they are useful; and as simple as they are beautiful. We believe in muslin-- the way it looks, the way it feels, the way it works-- to improve the lives of babies and their mothers no matter who they are or where they live.

My Thoughts
We received the jungle jam- giraffe aden+anais dream blanket to review! This adorable blanket has four soft and breathable layers of 100% cotton muslin. I honestly cannot believe how soft this blanket really is. Also, I was amazed at just how big the blanket is, too, at 47''x47''! I really want one of these for my bed because it is so snuggly soft and perfect for the upcoming summer weather. It's enough to keep Liam warm, but not too hot and sweaty.
Nothing else feels quite like muslin to me and it's the perfect, soft material to keep baby cuddly and happy. I had a muslin blanket when I was a child and kept it well into my twenties before it completely fell apart. Now my children will have one, too! I love this blanket and so do my kids, including my extremely picky toddler who keeps stealing this one from his brother. I have a feeling I will be purchasing another in the near future!

APCodes.com : Saves Money On Your Amazon Purchases

Over the past few years, I have become a huge Amazon fan, making 90% of my online purchases through them. When holidays and birthdays roll around, that's the first place I look. Usually I save a bit of money and I know the delivery is quick, but what if you could save even more money? With APCodes (short for Amazon Promotional Codes), you are able to find the latest promo codes just for Amazon!

I had no idea that there were always so much promotions going on via Amazon. You can find some on the homepage, but some are not always as heavily advertised. This is when APCodes comes in very handy! Just last week I was looking around Amazon because my husband wanted a new pair of dress shoes. During the search, I ended up finding a pair of shoes for myself, which happens all too often. Our total purchase would have been $100, but with the Amazon promotional codes I found, I saved $20! We ended up paying only $80 for 2 pairs of great shoes.

The deals and promotional codes are updated daily, so you can check back often and/or subscribe to receive the new promotional codes each day. APCodes make shopping more fun for me because I love to find a good deal. It makes my husband happy, too, since we save so much money! It's a win-win situation.

Right now you can enter to win a $25 Amazon Gift Code on APCodes, so head over to enter via Rafflecopter today!

Jolica - The Art of Giving Review & $75 Gift Card Giveaway

I love jewelry, but I am also very picky about what I purchase and wear. I prefer handmade jewelry that is unique and beautiful. This is exactly why I was so excited to work with Jolica on a review. They have such an amazing variety of jewelry, handbags, scarves and more, all handcrafted by artisans around the world.

About Jolica

Jolica chooses unique designs and top quality materials like sterling silver, Thai silk and supple leather for the goods they feature. all products are handcrafted in workshops across the world. Their artisans have traditions that are passed on through families. Jolica also prides itself upon supporting fair trade, which is a way of doing business that ensures the artisans benefit from their work and skill. All of the artisans make a living wage from their beautiful artwork sold through Jolica. Key principles of fair trade include not only being paid a fair wage, but receiving advance payments for raw materials, children receiving education and also being given the design and logistics assistance needed.

My Thoughts

When I first read about Jolica I was already in love before I even saw the jewelry. I love what they stand for and how they support and greatly appreciate the artisans. Fair trade is very important to me and I love working with fair trade companies. I couldn't wait to look through all of the goodies on Jolica to decide what to review and let me just say, this was a very tough decision!

April Extreme $500 Cash Giveaway Event

It’s time for the April Extreme Cash Giveaway! Woo!
This month’s prize is a... 
$500 Paypal cash prize!
 Just use the Rafflecopter form to complete your entries. There are many different entry options AND daily entries, too, so be sure to bookmark this page and come back to this page each day to enter. The April Extreme Cash Giveaway ends 5/13 and is open worldwide.