DON'T QUOTE THE RAVEN

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The 4th of July is Kind of My Favorite

| On
Wednesday, June 01, 2016

  
The Aquafresh brand has compensated me in connection with the statements made in this post.



We are a boating family.

Our boat is our second home in the summertime and basically Rob's first home as he tends to spend nights on the boat instead of coming home (side eye).

Anyway, one of my absolute favorite times to spend on the water and the beach is the 4th of July weekend. I grew up living by the river and the big 4th of July barge would park right in front of my grandparents dock, so fireworks on the water is essentially a huge part of my childhood.

Now that I have young kids of my own, I love sharing my memories and experiences with them. I love seeing them run on the beach and enjoy the fireworks and have fun with their friends and family. Making memories is so important to me as a mom, and I try my darnedest to mess them up as little as possible, ha ha.

We have a few holiday traditions as a family: invite as many good people as we can find, have cold beverages always on hand and assigning everyone one bomb side dish to enjoy beachside.

Because, food. This crowd loves our food. And of course on a holiday like the 4th, a lot of that food has sugar involved. How many red, white and blue combinations of fruit pizza can you make? You'd be surprised, but I can tell you from personal experience that it's more than ten.

After a long day out in the sun, having all the fun and eating all the food, I give my kids a bath, get them in the PJs and whip out the good ole' red, white and blue Aquafresh® Multi-Action Whitening toothpaste. I'm sure you all remember that as a kid? I know I do, and I know my kids think the colors are a pretty cool element.

Look. I'm crazy about my kids and their health. And I can probably count on one hand how many times my kids have gone to bed without brushing their teeth (seriously). So when I got re-introduced to Aquafresh® and then also learned how it provides Sugar Acid Protection (and what's a kid without sugar??), provided by active fluoride, to strengthen and shield teeth against sugar acid from everyday foods and drinks*, the key cause of cavities.

Not only that, but Aquafresh® also promotes healthy gums*, enamel strengthening and gives you fresh breath. The family that brushes together stays healthy together, am I right? (Ok that was kind of corny but still, true!)

Having fun responsibly, that's what I'm calling it. *wink

Have a fun summer guys!

You can check out the Aquafresh® Facebook page HERE
and their Twitter page HERE
*With twice daily brushing.

How do you celebrate the 4th of July? Tell me in the comments and you will be entered to win a $100 Visa gift card!

Entry Instructions:
No duplicate comments.
You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:
1. Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
2. Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post
3. Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post
4. For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.
This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older (or nineteen (19) years of age or older in Alabama and Nebraska). Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. The notification email will come directly from BlogHer via the sweeps@blogher email address. You will have 2 business days to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected.
The Official Rules are available here.
This sweepstakes runs from 6/1/2016 - 6/30/2016
Be sure to visit the Aquafresh® brand page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ posts!
Sweepstakes is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by Aquafresh® or GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare

Nothing Gets In The Way of My Summer Fun!

| On
Saturday, May 28, 2016


FLONASE® compensated me in connection with statements made in this post.


During the spring and summer, my husband and I live in the sun. He loves to golf, I love to garden and we both love taking our boat out on the water any chance we get.

It's our paradise: our place to forget about all the stresses Monday-Friday and relax with friends and family. We BBQ on the water, we have dance parties on the water and besides Hawaii there is honestly no place I would rather be! (Ok, and Vegas on New Years eve circa 2014, but you get the point.)

We were both raised on the water and spent our summers swimming, waterskiing, tubing... I mean, the color of my skin would always change five shades darker every year. And I loved it. I still love it! I admit I am a tried and true sun worshipper.

I of course make certain concessions so I can continue and enjoy my one true love: I make sure to slather on the sunscreen so I don't get a burn and to protect my skin and I also use FLONASE® Allergy Relief for my incredible allergies. I say "incredible" because for as long as I can remember, my allergies have been insane. Every spring/summer like clockwork, my allergies start to come out to play and for the longest time it was pure misery for me.

I would try everything to keep my allergies at bay. Over the counter, behind the counter, anything someone recommended...I was desperate, my allergies were that bad. And then I tried FLONASE®, a non-habit forming anti-inflammatory allergy relief that works in your nose to help block the allergic reaction that makes us allergy sufferers uncomfortable.

I didn't know what to expect, if it would really work this time but I am here to declare that this product has literally saved my summer life. It has made it not only bearable for me to be outdoors, but I actually forget I have allergies in the first place and can focus on having fun! Consistency is key. The nasal spray provides relief from allergies but its most effective with regular, once-a-day use. Use 2 sprays in each nostril once daily the first week. Then you can use 1 or 2 sprays in each nostril as needed to treat symptoms for up to 6 months. After 6 months of daily use – ask your doctor if you can keep using.

FLONASE® outperforms the #1 non-drowsy allergy pill*, it helps block six allergic substances, not only 1** and it's easy to find as it's an OTC nasal spray indicated to relieve stuffy nose and itchy watery eyes. (You can find FLONASE® in these locations.)
* Total nasal symptom relief vs. 10 mg single ingredient loratadine
**Mechanism vs. most over-the-counter (OTC) allergy pills. FLONASE® acts on multiple inflammatory substances (histamine, prostaglandins, cytokines, tryptases, chemokines and leukotrienes). The exact number and precise mechanism are unknown.

If you're like me and want to focus more on what you are doing and the people you are with, trying FLONASE® is where it's at. And you can easily earn points whenever you purchase FLONASE® Allergy Relief, watch videos, read articles and more! Be greater than your allergies, while earning greater rewards! Join today and you'll immediately earn points and save up to $4 with a FLONASE® coupon!

It has changed my summer fun having experience and now I completely look forward to those warm summer evenings!

Go boat or go home, am I right? Do you get seasonal allergies?
Tell me in the comments and you will be entered for a chance to win a $100 Visa gift card!

Entry Instructions:
No duplicate comments.
You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:
1. Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
2. Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post
3. Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post
4. For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.
This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older (or nineteen (19) years of age or older in Alabama and Nebraska). Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. The notification email will come directly from BlogHer via the sweeps@blogher email address. You will have 2 business days to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected.
The Official Rules are available here.
This sweepstakes runs from 5/26/2016 - 6/30/2016
Be sure to visit the FLONASE® brand page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ posts!
Sweepstakes is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by FLONASE® or GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare

Life Updates

| On
Wednesday, May 25, 2016
bag found HERE

BLOG UPDATE
I admit, I miss my blog. I used to love it, back in the heyday, and then I totally got burnt out and I always say I'll be back with a vengeance and then I putter off but I think this impending summer is re-energizing me and making me feel the burn again, and also, I have some summer blog obligations I have to keep so I hope that motivates me also. I actually have a lot lot lot of things I want to write about, to give my never to humble opinion about. We shall see.

HUSBAND UPDATE
Still married to the same one. He turns 51 this summer. He still hates all my social media, especially snapchat, which makes me even more inspired to snap him all day long. My username is snapdragon15 for anyone interested in watching me successfully deteriorate my marriage. All I ask is those without a sense a humor bypass. (Obvs I love my husband and still think he's smoking hot, otherwise I'd be long gone tracking down Billy Bob Thornton in some back ally begging him to please take me in like a stray.)

KID UPDATE
The little one is losing teeth left and right, and I know any day now his front left tooth will grow back in after being knocked out at 8 months old. I say every day that once it comes back in, I'm going to knock it back out because all we have ever known is a missing-front-tooth Coltie. Everyone only thinks I'm joking. (Trust, it will totally look like an accident.) My oldest loves long walks on the top of the roof without asking permission and apparently also loves wooden spoon prints on his ass. Every night we say prayers and read books and talk life and I swear I almost learn more from them than I have from this season of The Real Housewives of Dallas. 

WORK UPDATE
I'm still working at the real estate magazine M-F and just moved my station home so I can work in my home office while the kids are out for the summer. I've also been doing some freelance writing work for the newspaper and local businesses lately and I absolutely love it. I'll admit a strict 9-5 would never work for me so doing what I love to do on my timeline is a true blessing.

BOTOX UPDATE
I admit, I'm an addict now. I had it done for the first time about two months ago and I love the results. No one can tell a difference in my appearance, and the only thing that's different is when I raise my eyebrows, there are no wrinkles. Seriously! No wrinkles! When I raise my eyebrows! I drank the Koolaide, I'm a lifer. On the subject of plastic surgery, I know sometime in the near future I will need to get my bubbs redone, but so far, they look as good as the day I got them...no sagging, no lumps or bumps, and yes, when I get them redone I will go a tad bit bigger. I'd love some lip injections but Rob said he'd leave me if I ever attempted such a fallacy so big boobs and a wrinkle-free forehead will have to do. #struggle

ANXIETY UPDATE
The clash of anxiety and life. I've talked extensively here and here about having anxiety and taking medication for it, and then here about going off my meds because they were "making my crazy," and then here where I talked about how life was going without being on my meds and then here when I once again went back on my meds which is where I currently am. I am happy to report that I don't check the door locks fifty times a night (but I do check them at least twice) and I'm able to sleep through the tiniest of noises without thinking someone is coming to rapture me. Progress at it's finest.

ANIMAL/BABY UPDATE
After our precious black lab went to heaven, we were pretty content not having a dog. Which is weird because the entire duration of my 11+year relationship with Rob, we have always had dogs. But now we are getting the itch, and we want two little lab puppies. But I have questions: such as, who is gonna take them out to pee in the middle of the night? Who is gonna clean up their inside mess? Who is gonna train them to not run away? Who is gonna pay for my lifetime supply of botox? Once I get those questions answered, we can proceed.

As for actual human babies, I had the pro-ceeg a few years ago. I was certain I was done with kids. Two boys two years apart was it for me. And now I'm wishing I hadn't done that because I want a baby so bad! Seriously, if a miracle baby made it's way through, I would be insanely ecstatic. Most likely, (like 99.99976354%) it's not gonna happen, but if it did, I would be in heav. The baby stage was so my favorite.

And there it is. 

Love you, mean it.

I Confess...

| On
Thursday, May 05, 2016

Time I think for a good ol' fashioned "I confess" sesh....you know, like the good 'ol days, when bloggers blogged and lame giveaways were enough.

I confess: I always "accidentally" leave the price tag on a gift whenever I give a present to a friend so they know how much I spent on them.

I confess: I'm voting for Trump. And I'm ecstatic about it. 

I confess: I hate whenever someone is asked in an interview, "what is your biggest weakness?" and they give some bullshit answer like, "well, you know, I'm a perfectionist and I always want things to be perfect so that's my downfall." No bitch, that is a positive trait disguised as a "weakness." A true answer would be something along the lines of, "my biggest weakness is that I hate when people rudely tell me what to do and when that happens, I always tell them to f*ck off."

See, that I would respect so much more as an answer if I were an employer. #honesty

I confess: I'm at the point in my life where whenever I see an article pop up on my Facebook feed titled some such nonsense as "A Goodbye Letter To My Babies," I can just NOPE it real fast and move on. Like, I know what will go down if I click on that link. I will get sucked in and read the whole sappy thing and then cry all day long from the guilt of not being the perfect mother. I've been through that rodeo and I'm older and wiser now. Bye mom-shaming articles disguised as "inspirational content." 

Just. Keep. Scrolling.

I confess: the best new insult you can give someone these days, per the new snapchat protocol, is "yeah, well I skipped your snap story, so there!" Burn.

I confess: speaking of Snapchat, I'll be in Vegas all weekend, most likely doing the stupidest of stupid stuff (sorry mom, and yes, you did raise me better), so if you want to follow along... my snap name is snapdragon15. 

I finally confess: I got botox for the first time ever. Below are my thoughts on that.


Anyway. I regret nothing.

Snap: snapdragon15

Mom

| On
Sunday, April 24, 2016
 those bangs tho...

My mom is my person.

The one who has always encouraged me to go after my dreams. The one who never doubted me, always believed in me and helped me along the way to reach my full potential. She led by example: I'm still pretty sure I'm not half the mom she was (is), but if I can raise two kids who love me as much as I love her, I think I'll end up being okay.


My mom taught me a lot: how to play the piano, how to put in my contacts and how to always stay one step ahead of them sneaky boys. 

She taught me values, loyalty and sacrifice. 

She also wrote a guest post for me on my blog one time. 


We've been ziplining in Hawaii, riding jet skis in San Diego, sitting up front and personal during a Bruno Mars concert in Seattle, wine tasting in a Mercedes convertible, RV'ing across California and having many, many late night conversations over wine on your back patio.

When I grow up, I want to be just like you.


With Mother's Day approaching, I've been on the lookout for the perfect gift. Nothing generic will do - I need to find something personal and meaningful for the person who gave me life (and did so without pain meds, holla!).

And the best place in the Tri-Cities to find my mom something for a holiday that celebrates all the great mothers out there is Columbia Center Mall. They have a great selection: from clothing to perfume to jewelry to some of the best smelling lotions on the planet (hello Bath & Body Works). I don't know about you, but I raid my moms closet every chance I get. We have similar styles and are constantly borrowing each other's clothes (or I "borrow" hers until she notices them missing and then I have to give them back...womp womp).


Local readers! Columbia Center is having an event on May 6th: Indulge: Mom's Night Out! It will include a fashion show, swag bags for the first 300 guests, live entertainment, local vendors, prizes as well as special savings and promotions! The event will take place from 6-8 PM so grab your mom or sister or friend and come join the fun!


And exclusively for you guys, I'm giving away a $100 Columbia Center mall gift card! All you have to do is comment something you love about your mom/aunt/favorite female figure and I will draw the winning entry on Friday and notify winner by email. 

Moms: can't live without them and...yeah, basically we just can't live without them.

*You can visit the mall's Facebook page HERE and 
be kept up to date on all upcoming events.