Friday, August 30, 2013

DVD Preview - Strawberry Shortcake: Berry Bitty Mysteries

I am sharing this information as a member of the Fox Home ENT Insiders Blogging Program. I will receive a free copy of this DVD for review. All opinions expressed are my own.

Get ready for mischief, mystery and marvelous good times in Strawberry Shortcake: Berry Bitty Mysteries. You’ll follow the clues to fun and adventure as Strawberry and her pals learn to face their fears, become real-life heroines and find some missing VIP’s (Very Important Pets)! It’s glimmery girl power to the rescue in these stories of friendship! 

You can find this newest Strawberry Shortcake installment on DVD and Digital HD on September 24, 2013.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Do You Know About The Cottonelle Clean Routine? #LetsTalkBums #Ad

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Cottonelle. All opinions expressed are my own.

Going to the bathroom, aka “taking care of #1 and #2”, seems like a perfectly natural topic of discussion when it comes to our babies and kids. We don’t bat an eye when talking about poopy diapers or training pants disasters. However, once you apply the subject of elimination to us adults, well… the conversation can feel a little awkward.

Let’s face it – going to the bathroom is something we all do. And, it’s pretty safe to assume that we all want to feel fresh and clean after we do it. Most of us are probably accustomed to only using toilet paper to get the job done. But, sometimes that’s just not enough. We can be left feeling a little less clean than we would like. Or, often that toilet paper that is supposed to be cleaning things up, can leave a mess of its own with traces and bits of paper left behind on our bum. Ewww!

Cottonelle wants to get the flow of conversation going when it comes to our personal bathroom habits. They have partnered with London-based immersive journalist, Cherry Healey, to get people talking about the way they wipe and how to get a better clean.

A great way to improve your bathroom routine is by using Cottonelle toilet paper along with Cottonelle Flushable Cleansing Cloths. These two products are designed to work together to provide you with a thorough cleanse that you can really feel.

I have personally been using wet cloths as part of my bathroom routine for a while now. If it’s something you’re not used to, it may feel a little different at first. But, I think you will soon find that it leaves you noticeably more fresh and confident. You won't want to go to the bathroom without it!

Cottonelle Flusable Cleansing Cloths now come in a sleek, new upright container. I love using this dispenser in my own bathroom because it is easily accessible, simple to refill, and neutral enough in design that it will blend right in with your décor. The wipes have a pleasant scent and just the right amount of wetness.

The Cottonelle Care Routine really is the way to go when it comes to having to “go.” Join the conversation on Facebook and try the Cottonelle Care Routine for yourself.

Cottonelle wants to get you talking about your bum and on a better way to clean “down there” by using the Cottonelle Clean Routine. By combining the use of Cottonelle Toilet Paper and Cottonelle Flushable Cleansing Cloths, the Cottonelle Clean Routine is a revolutionary way to keep your bum cleaner.

Are you ready? Don’t be shy! Visit to learn more about the Cottonelle Clean Routine and join the clean routine conversation.

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Cottonelle. Tracking Pixel

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Senior Driving

The other day I was on my way home from the grocery store when I came across a doozy of a fender-bender.

Image via Photo Pin

It had just happened and there were no emergency vehicles yet on the scene. I assumed that no one was injured as the two drivers involved were standing and talking beside their cars. From what I could see, it appeared that one driver probably ran a red light, pulling out and crashing into the driver who had the green light.

One of the drivers was a very frail-looking, white-haired old man who was standing with a cane. He seemed a little frazzled. From the looks of things, it appeared as if he was driving the car that pulled out and caused the wreck. I have a huge soft spot for elderly folks and my heart immediately went out to him.

I could be totally wrong in deducing that he caused the accident. That's just how it looked to me. But, regardless, it got me to thinking about older people and driving.

Image via CanStockPhoto

According to an article on the AARP website, more than 20% of Americans age 65 and older do not drive. That's still a major part of the senior population that is driving. Of course, most of these drivers are probably perfectly capable and safe to drive. But, I have to wonder about those few older men and women who shouldn't be driving, who maybe aren't as sharp or quick to react as they used to be. 

AAA offers some helpful tools for the senior driver. They have an interactive quiz that helps drivers self-rate their driving ability. There are also trained professionals who will assess and come up with a training plan or recommendations to help keep the senior driver safe and driving longer. Check out this page for more helpful resources and brochures relating to senior driving. 

My own mother is 75 and a widow. She no longer drives. If she absolutely had to go someplace locally, she would be okay. But, for the most part, she relies on my sister and I to take her to all the places she needs to go. She has arthritis and macular degeneration, so she just does not trust that her reflexes and eyesight are sharp enough to be driving. While she hates having to rely on someone else to transport her around, she knows it is the right thing to do. But, when she is not able to get out of the house for awhile, she has told me that she feels very lonely and isolated. I'm happy that I'm in a position of being able to help her (I live right down the street from her and I do not work outside the home so I'm almost always available). I'm also glad she was able to come to this decision on her own and is okay with it. I can only imagine how difficult it must be for some who are forced to give up driving. It must be a helpless feeling.

What about you? Do you have any elderly people in your life who may be having difficulty driving? If so, I encourage you to look into some of the kinds of resources I mentioned above. 

Also, if you do know a non-driving senior, make a point to offer your services to them - drive them to their appointment or to the grocery store; take them out for a leisurely ride just to get out; or ask them to ride along with you as you take care of your own errands. By doing this, you can help the senior to feel less of a sense of isolation and helplessness. You just might brighten someone's day, too!

This is not a sponsored post, just me sharing my thoughts on a subject close to my heart. 

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Swagbucks Code Alert 8-17-13

This post contains a referral link. 

Swag Code Alert! Swag Code Alert!


Here's the new Swag Code available on

Date: Sat, 8/17|Code: PunnyAnimals
Time: 12pm-2pm PDT

Code is worth 5 SB. All Times are in Pacific Time (PDT). Codes are case-sensitive.

If you don't know about Swagbucks yet, it's the largest rewards website that gives people free gift cards for the things they do online.

In addition to earning Swag Bucks through the Search engine, playing Games, Watching videos, taking Surveys & more, they also like to give out Swag Codes for bonus Swag Bucks. The more Swag Bucks, the more free gifts cards! I love earning Amazon gift cards through Swagbucks!

Don't miss out on all the savings and free rewards -- sign up for Swagbucks here and start earning today!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Blog Tour - Winter in Full Bloom by Anita Higman

Litfuse Publicity Group provided me with a free copy of this book for review. I was not obligated to post a positive review and no monetary compensation was received. All opinions and views expressed in this post are my own.

About The Book 
Lily Winter's wings are folded so tightly around her daughter that when empty nest arrives, she feels she can no longer fly. But Lily's lonely, widowed life changes in a heartbeat when she goes to visit a woman who is almost a stranger to her---a woman who also happens to be her mother. During their fiery reunion, her mother reveals a dark family secret that she'd been hiding for decades---Lily has an identical twin sister who was put up for adoption when they were just babies. 

Without looking back, Lily---with her fear of flying---boards a jumbo jet and embarks on a quest to find her sister which leads half way around the world to Melbourne, Australia. Befriended by an imprudent Aussie, he might prove to be the key to finding her sister. But her journey becomes a circle that leads her back home to attempt a family reunion and to find the one dream she no longer imagined possible-the chance to fall in love again.

Purchase The Book 

Meet The Author 
Best-selling and award-winning author, Anita Higman, has over thirty books published (several coauthored) for adults and children. She's been a Barnes & Noble "Author of the Month" for Houston and has a BA degree, combining speech communication, psychology, and art. Anita loves good movies, exotic teas, and brunch with her friends.

Connect with The Author

Follow Along With The Blog Tour

My Thoughts
Winter in Full Bloom is a touching and heartwarming story. I was immediately drawn into Lily's plight to learn about her newly discovered sister. I like that the circumstances of their separation were not immediately revealed - it kept me guessing and intrigued. There is a lot going on in the story; each of the main characters has some kind of issue they are trying to resolve. As they all come together, they are able to help each other work on those resolutions. The story is strongly faith-based and those beliefs are what ultimately helps everyone find their way in the end. The book is a quick and easy read with complex and interesting characters. There were a couple aspects of the book that left me feeling a little confused - for example, Lily's mother had a housekeeper/friend-for-hire and I never really truly understood her purpose in the story. She was an unlikable character and a mystery. Also, in the end (I won't give anything away), there is a sudden mention of a man from Ireland. I would have liked to know a little more about him, as well. Overall, though, I did like Winter in Full Bloom and found it to be romantic and redeeming.


Anita Higman's latest novel, Winter in Full Bloom, has just released. She's teamed up with her publisher, River North Fiction, for a fun giveaway and a Facebook Author Chat Party on August 29th.

  One grand prize winner will receive:
  • A Kindle Fire HD
  • Winter in Full Bloom by Anita Higman
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on August 28th.Winner will be announced August 29th at the Winter in Full Bloom Author Chat Party on Facebook. During the party Anita will be hosting a book chat, talking about family, announcing the winner of the Kindle Fire, and giving away a ton of books, gift certificates, and more. Oh, and she'll also be giving party goers an exclusive look at her next book.

So grab your copy of Winter in Full Bloom and join Anita on the evening of August 29th for a chance to connect and make some new friends. (If you haven’t read the book, don’t let that stop you from coming!)


Thursday, August 15, 2013

Official Trailer for Disneynature Bears #DisneynatureBears

I am sharing this content on behalf of Disney. No compensation was received for this post. All opinions expressed are my own.

I cannot even tell you how excited I am about seeing Disneynature Bears. It will be opening in theaters on April 18, 2014 - just in time for Earth Day!

From Disney:
In an epic story of breathtaking scale set against a majestic Alaskan backdrop teeming with life, Disneynature’s 2014 big-screen adventure “Bears” follows a bear family as impressionable young cubs are taught life’s most important lessons.

·       “Bears” is the fifth theatrical release for Disneynature, the first new Disney-branded film label from The Walt Disney Studios in more than 60 years.  The label was launched in April 2008 to bring the world’s top nature filmmakers together to capture a variety of wildlife subjects and stories.

·       The first four releases under the Disneynature label—“Earth,” “Oceans,” “African Cats” and “Chimpanzee”—are among the top five highest grossing feature-length nature films of all time.

·       Walt Disney was a pioneer in wildlife documentary filmmaking, producing 13 True Life Adventure motion pictures between 1948 and 1960, including “Seal Island” (1948), “Beaver Valley” (1950), “The Living Desert” (1953) and “Jungle Cat” (1958).  The films earned eight Academy Awards®

Get ready for stunningly beautiful scenery along with some major cuteness in what is sure to be a great family film. Check out the new trailer for Disneynature Bears...


 Connect and learn more via Facebook, Twitter, and the website.

Exclusive Clip from Epic's Blu-ray Special Features #EpicDay

I am sharing this clip as a member of the Fox Home ENT Insiders Blogging Program. I received a free Blu-Ray copy of Epic. No monetary compensation was received for this post. As always, any opinions expressed are my own.

Epic on Blu-ray combo pack, deluxe edition Blu-ray and DVD will be available August 20, 2013. Don't forget I'm hosting a giveaway where you can win your own copy. There's not much time left so hurry over and enter here.

In the meantime, here's an exclusive clip from Epic's Blu-ray special features. It's a segment that talks about Beyonce's character, Queen Tara, and the design of her beautiful nature-inspired costume.


Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Swagbucks Code Alert 8-13-13

This post contains a referral link.

Swag Code Alert! Don't miss it!


Here's the new Swag Code available on

Date: Tues, 8/13|Code: southpaw
Time: 4pm-5:30pm PDT
Valid In: US, CAN, AUS

Code is worth 5 SB. All Times are in Pacific Time (PDT). Codes are case-sensitive.

Swagbucks is the largest rewards website that gives people free gift cards for the things they do online.

In addition to earning Swag Bucks through the Search engine, playing Games, Watching videos, taking Surveys & more, they also like to give out Swag Codes for bonus Swag Bucks. The more Swag Bucks, the more free gifts cards! In fact, I earn Amazon gift cards through Swagbucks all the time.

Don't miss out on all the savings and free rewards -- sign up for Swagbucks here.

ZACT Mobile Services Infographic and Giveaway

I participated in a campaign for Mom Central Consulting on behalf of Zact. I received a promotional item as a thank you for participating. All opinions expressed in this post are my own. “

Three of my kids are ages 15-20. They each have a smartphone and I feel comfortable with their cellphone practices and usage. However, my youngest son does not yet have a cellphone. He is 12 years old and desperate to have one of his own. He asks us about it all the time. I'm just not sure if he is ready to handle the responsibility. I worry about protecting his privacy and giving him to much access to the web.

Just like me, many other parents share these same concerns. The team at Zact conducted a survey and found that 73% of U.S. parents are concerned about the lack of parental control of a child's activities on mobile devices. Check out the Zact infographic below for more statistics from their survey.

One statistic that really caught my eye and I totally agree with is that 3 out of 4 parents believe that U.S. legislation has not kept up with changes in the mobile phone industry in relation to protecting minors. I think we simply must do more to protect our kids.

What are your biggest concerns about your kids using smartphones? Is this something you have had discussions about in your family?

For three days (8-13, 8-14, and 8-15), the Zact team is giving away three smartphones, all with three months of mobile service. For more information about Zact mobile services and to enter the giveaway, please click here.

Movie Trailer Tuesday - Sunshine

Welcome to "Movie Trailer Tuesday" - my weekly blog feature where I share a movie recommendation by posting a quick blurb and trailer for you to check out.


Sunshine is not for the faint of heart - there's intense, keep-you-on-the-edge-of-your-seat moments as well as disturbing imagery. But, if you like futuristic sci-fi, then you might want to give it a watch.

Here's the premise - the fate of the earth is in jeopardy because the sun is dying. A team of scientists and astronauts have been sent into space on a mission to save the planet. While on their journey, they uncover some new information that could alter their plans. They are faced with major decisions and moral dilemmas, many of which must be made at the spur of the moment.

I thought the story was suspenseful, frightening, stunning, and nerve-wracking; there were times I think I was even holding my breath. The music that accompanied the scenes was spectacular and really added to what was going on in the movie.

Rated R for violent content and language. Available on Netflix.


Monday, August 12, 2013

Swagbucks Code Alert 8-12-13

This post contains a referral link.

Swag Code Alert! Hurry and go get it!


Here's the new Swag Code available on

Date: Mon, 8/12|Code: Shop4School 
Time: 6am-7am PDT
Valid In: ALL excluding AUS

Code is worth 5 SB. All Times are in Pacific Time (PDT). Codes are case-sensitive.

If you don't know about Swagbucks yet, it's the largest rewards website that gives people free gift cards for the things they do online.

In addition to earning Swag Bucks through the Search engine, playing Games, Watching videos, taking Surveys & more, they also like to give out Swag Codes for bonus Swag Bucks. The more Swag Bucks, the more free gifts cards! In fact, helps me to regularly earn Amazon gift cards. Don't miss out on all the savings and free rewards -- sign up for Swagbucks here.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Swagbucks Code Alert 8-9-13

This post contains a referral link. 

Swag code alert! Grab it while you can!


Here's the new Swag Code available on

Date: Fri, 8/9|Code: SchoolStarts
Time: 12pm - 2pm PDT

Code is worth 5 SB. All Times are in Pacific Time (PDT). Codes are case-sensitive.

If you are not familiar with Swagbucks, it's the largest rewards website that gives people free gift cards for the things they do online.

In addition to earning Swag Bucks through the Search engine, playing Games, Watching videos, taking Surveys & more, they also like to give out Swag Codes for bonus Swag Bucks. The more Swag Bucks, the more free gifts cards! In fact, has helped me earn lots of Amazon gift cards and Paypal cash. Don't miss out on all the savings and free rewards -- sign up for Swagbucks here.

Meijer's "Most Likely To..." Back-to-School Photo Sweepstakes

This is a sponsored post written on behalf of Meijer. All opinions expressed are my own.

My husband and I met and started dating in high school. I'll never forget my husband's senior year - he was voted "Most Likely to be Argumentative" by his fellow classmates. Of course, this was all in fun and there were many different silly titles bestowed upon various students.

Now, we have four children of our own. They each have their own unique talents and interests.

If I'm being honest, I would have to say that our third-born son could also easily earn the "Most Argumentative" award. He certainly takes after his dad in many gotta love their determination and tenacity!

Our daughter, on the other hand, should snag the honor of being "Most Likely to be a World Traveler." She truly loves diversity and culture and yearns to get out and explore the world.

Our youngest and oldest sons are both very friendly and outgoing and have the special ability to make others laugh.

Whatever our kids grow up to be, I just know great things are in store for each of them. We are very proud to be their parents!

Meijer's "Most Likely To..." Photo Sweepstakes

From July 28 through September 8, 2013, Meijer is having a back-to-school "Most Likely To..." photo sweepstakes.

You are invited to submit a photo that showcases your child's individuality and what they are most likely to be when they grow up. By sharing your photo and entering the sweepstakes, you will have the chance to win a $100 Meijer gift card.

Maybe you have a chef-in-training or a budding artist. Or, perhaps your youngster wants to be a future teacher, firefighter, or doctor. No matter what their dreams may be, Meijer wants to know what your child is "Most Likely To..."

Be sure and check out the sweepstakes and remember Meijer when making your school shopping lists.

With back-to-school time right around the corner (or already here for some), Meijer is the perfect choice for all your shopping needs - from clothing to school supplies to groceries and snacks - it's a one-stop shop!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Swagbucks Code Alert 8-7-13

This post contains a referral link.

Here's a Swagbucks Code Alert - grab it before it's gone!


Here's the new Swag Code available on
Date: Wed, 8/7|Code: BloggerTips 
Time: 3pm - 4:30pm PDT
Valid In: US, CAN, AUS

Code is worth 5 SB. All Times are in Pacific Time (PDT). Codes are case-sensitive.

If you don't know about Swagbucks yet, it's the largest rewards website that gives people free gift cards for the things they do online.

In addition to earning Swag Bucks through the Search engine, playing Games, Watching videos, taking Surveys & more, they also like to give out Swag Codes for bonus Swag Bucks. The more Swag Bucks, the more free gifts cards! In fact, has helped me earn numerous Amazon gift cards as well as Paypal cash.

Don't miss out on all the savings and free rewards -- sign up for Swagbucks here.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Disney's MUPPETS MOST WANTED Coming to Theaters Spring 2014 #MuppetsMostWanted

I am sharing this information on behalf of Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. No compensation was received and all opinions expressed in this post are my own.

When I think of The Muppets, it brings back such good childhood memories. I can remember watching The Muppets television show each week as a kid - such fun and it always made me laugh!

Now, I am excited to let you know about Disney's Muppets Most Wanted. It's a new film that will be coming to theaters in March of 2014.

While this is still a way off from release, it is sure to be a great family-friendly movie that we can look forward to.

Here's a little peek at a teaser trailer that was just released on Check it out and let me know which Muppet character is your fave...

Muppets Most Wanted Teaser Trailer on Disney Video

Like The Muppets on Facebook
Follow The Muppets on Twitter
Follow Miss Piggy on Twitter

Monday, August 5, 2013

"Shrinking Heroes in Film" Feature with Epic Blu-Ray Movie Giveaway #EpicDay

This Giveaway is Closed

 I am sharing this feature and giveaway as a member of the Fox Home ENT Insiders Blogging Program. I am receiving a free Blu-Ray copy of Epic. No monetary compensation was received for this post. As always, any opinions expressed are my own. 

Shrinking Heroes With A Big Impact

Debuting on Blu-ray & DVD August 20 

 We typically think of heroes as being large, strong, and courageous. After going through a change in size these heroes may be miniature, but they are certainly brave! Here’s a look at our favorite characters from movie history that have been transformed into smaller versions of themselves.

From the creators of Ice Age, the year’s funniest, most exhilarating animated adventure comes home as EPIC debuts on Blu-ray Combo Pack, Deluxe Edition Blu-ray, and DVD this August 20 from Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment. Directed by Chris Wedge (The Ice Age Franchise) and featuring an amazing voice cast including Colin Farrell, Amanda Seyfried, Christoph Waltz, Jason Sudeikis, Steven Tyler, Pitbull, and Beyoncé, the blockbuster film comes home just in time to help families become one with nature and end the summer in Epic style. 

Mary Katherine- Epic 

When Mary Katherine is transformed into a miniature version of herself and introduced to the magical world of Moonhaven she thinks that it is all a dream. Proving that she is much tougher than she looks, MK teams up with the Leafman warriors to help defend against the forces of evil. By the end of her epic journey, MK has not only saved Moonhaven, but our world as well! 

 Nick & Amy Szalinski- Honey, I Shrunk the Kids 

 Amy and Nick Szalinski were left to fend for themselves after their father, inventor Wayne Szalinski, accidentally shrank them down to microscopic size. The kids found themselves in a lot of sticky situations. They were attacked by a scorpion twice their size, picked up by a bee, and almost eaten by their own dad in a bowl of cheerios! Supporting each other, Nick and Amy brave the oversized elements until Wayne can get them back to normal size. 

Alice- Alice in Wonderland 

 Alice didn’t know what she was getting herself into when she followed the White Rabbit and fell down the hole, but her adventure is one that we will always remember. Finding herself in a strange place with talking animals and unusual tea parties, our heroine makes new friends and has new experiences. Even though she was just a young girl, Alice bravely fought against the Jabberwocky and saved Underworld from the reign of the Red Queen. 

 Wayne Szalinski- Honey, We Shrunk Ourselves 

 When the adults were accidentally hit by the ray of the shrinking machine, the kids mistakenly thought they were home alone. Wayne and Gordon try to get the kids’ attention by changing the wiring of some speakers to use as a microphone. Throughout the film, Wayne proves himself as a hero by fighting off a large cockroach and riding inside a bubble. In the end, Wayne grows both physically and emotionally when he becomes a better father to his son Adam. 

 Zak- FernGully: The Last Rainforest 

 Although Zak starts out as one of the bad guys, his change of heart gets him a spot on our list of favorite miniature heroes. Through his relationship with Crysta, Zak learns how important the natural world is. In the end, Zak helps save FernGully by stopping Hexxus and the other lumberjacks from taking down all of the trees and destroying the forest forever.

Epic Blu-Ray Movie Giveaway

Arriving on Blu-ray Combo Pack, Deluxe Edition Blu-ray and DVD August 20

Transported to a magical world, a teenager (Amanda Seyfried) is recruited by a nature spirit, Queen Tara (Beyoncé Knowles), to help the “Leafmen” save their existence – and ours – from evil warriors. The whole family will love this fast-paced thrill-ride!

Every Blu-ray and DVD comes with the Epic Coloring and Storybook Builder app. The app will allow kids to create their own Epic story and share it with family and friends.

The EPIC Blu-ray combo-pack includes Blu-ray, DVD and DigitalHD and comes complete with exclusives that will have kids both engaged and learning about the environment, just before heading back to school.  With special features including an overview of what life as a person two inches tall would be like, to discovering all of the different bugs from the film, EPIC is the perfect gift for families to enjoy from summer to the holidays!

**One random winner will be selected to receive a copy of Epic on Blu-ray. This giveaway is only open to U.S. residents who are 18 and older. Giveaway end at 10:00 pm EST on 8-16-13.

To enter the giveaway: Leave a comment on this post telling me who you are excited to share Epic on Blu-ray with. Please make sure I have a valid way to contact you in case you are the winner.

Optional extra entries (leave a separate comment for each):
-Follow @FoxHomeEnt on Twitter (leave your Twitter name in comment)
-Follow @alas3lads on Twitter (leave your Twitter name in comment)
-Tweet the following 1x daily (leave link to your tweet)
Check out "Shrinking Heroes in Film" plus Epic Blu-Ray Giveaway c/o @FHEInsiders #EpicDay via @alas3lads

Friday, August 2, 2013

My 6 Year Blogiversary Thoughts and Giveaway

This month marks my 6th year as a blogger.

Six years!

That seems like an eternity in blogging yet it still feels fresh and fun and I continue to learn each and every day. (I still have SO much to learn!)

I know blogging means something different to everyone. Each person has their own reasons for getting into the world of blogging - and for sticking with it.

For me, it's pretty simple. Blogging lets me share whatever might be on my mind or going on in my life at the moment. I can talk, vent, laugh, cry, or ask for feedback on a variety of topics. Maybe I'm having a parenting issue with my teens or want to get your opinion on what color to paint my living room. Maybe I want to show you some cool new product I found or dish about the latest chick flick I saw or some great book that I read.

While I'm doing all this talking and sharing, I'm getting the opportunity to connect with a diverse group of people that I might not otherwise have had the chance to "meet" - that's a pretty cool thing!

When it comes to blogging, I have pretty much always just winged it. I'm not a technical person, at all, so that aspect of blogging has always been a challenge. I don't plan elaborate calendars, set big goals, or schedule my posts weeks in advance. That's okay. I don't have huge followings or make a lot of money from my blog. That's okay, too. I just write what's in my head or my heart, sharing some cool sponsored posts along the way, and hope that I can make some real connections with my readers.

As far as the future of my blog, here are a few things I'm thinking about...

1) Making the switch to Wordpress - Everybody that's anybody says you have to be self-hosted on Wordpress, that Blogger blogs just don't cut it ( but I love my easy, comfy space on Blogger). I really want to make this move, but it scares me to pieces to even think about. I am pretty clueless when it comes to the technical part of blogging so I'm sure this would be a difficult change. When I hear the words "plugins" and "domains" it freaks me out!  If I did make the change, I would need a very patient helper to take care of it for me, holding my hand through the entire process. But, as I look at using my blog as more of a way to earn money, I know it is something I will do eventually.

2) Should I change my blog name? - Alas 3 Lads, was something I came up with that represented my kids (I have one girl - a Lass - and 3 boys - 3 Lads). It seemed clever at the time, but sometimes it feels clunky when I say it. People don't immediately understand it. I sometimes wish I could come up with something else that flows a little better. But, the process of re-branding seems very daunting and I just don't know.

3) Attending a Blog Conference - This is something that is high on my bucket list. I've met some really great people through my blog. It would be nice to get to meet in real life. And, I'm sure I would learn a ton. But, I'm pretty shy and a little co-dependent. I would have to work up some big-time bravery to take off and go to a blog conference on my own. I need a blogging buddy to adopt me and mentor me through my first time;)

4) My stats - This is another area where I feel really challenged. I just do not fully understand how to use and interpret Google Analytics. I really need to look around for a tutorial or something to help me utilize this in a better way.

If you're still reading, thanks for sticking around. I would love to hear any words of wisdom you have when it comes to the things I mentioned above. Also, if you are a regular reader of my blog, I want to say THANK YOU. I really do appreciate each and every single visit and comment.


And, now as a small token of celebration and thanks, I have a $25 VISA Gift Card for giveaway. 

This giveaway is open to U.S. residents who are 18 or older. Please enter using the Rafflecopter form below. a Rafflecopter giveaway

New Poster for Marvel's THOR: THE DARK WORLD #ThorDarkWorld

Take a look at the new movie poster for THOR: THE DARK WORLD 

This film will be in U.S. theaters November 8, 2013.

Like THOR on Facebook

Follow THOR on Twitter

Visit the website


Thursday, August 1, 2013

College Visits and Life Regrets

Yesterday, I accompanied my daughter, Shelby, on our first official college visit/tour. We visited the University of Louisville.

Louisville is my hometown, where I was born and raised. And, while we now live in a suburb just a few minutes south of Louisville, we still consider ourselves Louisvillians and go there all the time for everything.

Shelby is about to start her senior year in high school. College will be here before we know it. She plans on living on campus so I'm pretty happy that she is considering U of L - it's super close to home but she will still get the full college experience of living on a large, metropolitan campus.

The tour started out with a video showing various students talking about what they wanted to get out of their college experience. Of course, it was a promotional video made by the school so the kids in the video were very eager and excited about college life. It was maybe even a tad corny. But, it still got to me.

5 minutes into the visit and I was literally fighting back tears.


Just looking at my daughter and thinking about how she will soon be embarking on her future. How it seems like just yesterday she was a little girl, sitting in my lap, dependent on me for everything. Now, she has the entire world, her future, right at her fingertips.

It is very exciting - both exciting and heartbreaking to me.

But, that's our jobs as parents. Taking care of our kids as they grow up; nurturing, loving, and teaching them. Preparing them to go out on their own. And, you better believe it goes by in the blink of an eye!

The college tour was very impressive - it is a great school! Having only commuted to our local community college myself, I don't really know about living away at college. There were tons of activities, programs, and wonderful opportunities to get involved with. It is a very diverse campus, which Shelby loves. I just know that U of L would be a place where Shelby could thrive and grow and come into her own as a young adult. 

The visit made me think about my own life and how I wish I would have went away to college. Don't get me wrong...I'm very happy with the way my life has turned out and I am very blessed. But, if I had to say I had one regret in life, it would be not living away at college. Even though I'm happy and content now, I feel like this is one life regret I will always have...something that I really missed out on.

What about you? Did you go away to college? Is there something in your life that you feel you missed out on?...